As Mark Twain said, “few things are harder to put up with than a good example.” Unfortunately for opponents of constitutional caps on runaway spending, Governor Napolitano’s proposed fiscal 2007 budget is a good example of why Arizona needs one.
Governor Napolitano's ’07 budget calls for $10 billion in General Fund spending. That’s a 23 percent increase over 2006, almost four times faster than population and inflation growth, and three times faster than personal income growth. At this growth rate, the Joint Legislative Budget Committee projects a $375 million budget shortfall next year, growing to $755 million in 2008 and $832 million in 2009.
The Governor campaigned on the promise of fiscal responsibility, but these looming deficits are 20 percent larger than the ones she encountered when she took office.
A growing state budget means less take home pay for the people who earned it. One proposed constitutional cap on spending would return at least $400 to every worker in Arizona. Most important, it would put government back in its rightful place as citizens’ servant not master. Now is the time for Arizona to set a good example the rest of the nation could follow: it’s time to limit spending.
-Goldwater Institute: “Headed for Heartburn”
-Heritage Foundation: “The Impact of Government Spending on Economic Growth”
-Joint Legislative Budget Committee, “Comparison of JLBC Baseline and Executive Budget Proposal”