Governor’s Recommended FY22 Budget Released
On Tuesday the Governor gave his annual Budget Address, which marked the formal start of the budget-writing process for the upcoming 2022 Fiscal Year (FY22).
The Governor’s speech is accompanied by the release of the Governor’s Recommended Budget, which is used by legislative committees as the starting point for their budget writing process. We expect the House to be working on their FY22 budget until mid-March, with the Senate doing most of their budget work in March and April.
In general, for FY22 the Governor is recommending a number of major new expenditures that rely on one-time (as opposed to ongoing) spending, and apparently no major reductions. Details of how his budget is constructed are still being released.
The Governor is recommending the state continue with the “redesign” of the Child Care Financial Assistance Program (CCFAP) in FY22, including updates to the program’s computer system. However, the Administration estimates that no program funding increases will be necessary to pay for those changes, due to lower utilization levels attributed to the pandemic.
That means that the Governor is recommending level funding for CCFAP in FY22. The Governor is once again proposing that revenue raised through state-run gambling (specifically Keno) be used to support CCFAP. The Legislature quickly rejected this proposed funding source last year. Alliance member organizations will be digging into the details of all these CCFAP-related proposals in the coming days.
As we know, the issues with IT and technology impact many programs that serve the early childhood community. Therefore, we will be watching the Legislature’s reception of the Governor’s proposal to allocate $53 million to establish a Technology Modernization Fund.
The Governor is also suggesting major new one-time investments in housing supports. His proposals include allocating $20 million to fully fund the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board (VHCB), and $3 million to the Vermont Homeowner Investment Program.
We will learn more about the details of these and other parts of the Governor’s Recommended FY22 Budget that were not mentioned in Tuesday’s speech later this week and early next, as presentations are made by state agencies and departments to various committees. For more information, please reach out to the lead organizations on the issues on our Legislative Agenda, who can help you follow the details of the discussions.