Phoenix– Governor Jan Brewer today signed the fiscal 2015 state budget – a balanced, principled and fiscally prudent spending plan that directs resources to prioritize and protect core policy issues highlighted in her 2014 State of the State address.
“Job number one every session is to pass a responsible budget for the state of Arizona – and that’s what I signed into law today,” said Governor Brewer. “This budget keeps us on the path to restoring the state to a structurally balanced budget by 2016 and protects the rainy day fund while addressing critical priorities like child protection, public safety and education.
“Importantly, my signature on this budget comes with a clear, shared commitment with the Legislature to revisit additional funding for a new child protection agency once the child safety reform working group completes its process. A new agency must have the resources it needs to succeed in its core mission to safeguard Arizona’s abused and neglected children. Furthermore, I have line-item vetoed certain appropriations in the budget in order to maintain a fiscally prudent spending plan and preserve crucial resources for our reform efforts. Child safety is a core focus, and our state budget must reflect that.”
The $9.2 billion budget signed into law today appropriates an additional $59 million for a new, successor child safety agency, with a commitment to revisit more funding in the immediate future. With this budget, the Governor has secured nearly $100 million in new spending and 438 new positions to help protect Arizona’s abused and neglected children over the past year. The budget also allocates funding to the areas of K-12 and higher education; healthcare and human services; and infrastructure and government.
Budget highlights include:
A Balanced and Principled Plan:
– Keeps intact framework for a structurally balanced budget by FY ‘16
– Keeps sound ending balances through FY ‘17
– Protects the Rainy Day Fund
– Lays the groundwork for creating a child safety agency
– Starts replacement of the out-of-date CHILDS data system
– Provides funding for fire safety
Supports K-12/Higher Education
– Establishes K-12 Student Success Funding
– Funds K-12 Inflation
– Includes funding for the next generation student assessment
– Ends the University parity funding disparity and allows the transition to a performance funding model
– Addresses the increase in Adult Protective services caseloads
– Increases funding for Alzheimer’s research
– Stabilizes funding for TGEN for the next five-years
– Provides additional funds for rural hospitals
– Establishes a Veteran Home in Yuma
– Provides additional funding for tourism
– Provides funding to protect Arizona’s water supply
– Provides funding to protect Arizona’s Military bases
Letters detailing Governor Brewer’s line-item vetoes can be found at: http://bit.ly/1ehCNDK and http://bit.ly/1ewZApV.