Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Budgeting involves choosing 

In some places, people look at the budget they have and make choices of what they can and cannot provide. Take for example the Bureau of Labor Statistics. I got a postcard this morning from BLS indicating that they were not able to mail any more paper reports due to unexpected budget issues. No big deal, I thought, since I get The WSJ economics blog writes that a rather valuable survey may have to go away because money is needed for updating other surveys. I think it's a hard choice to have to make, but notice that the Bush Administration is at least making choices. That's what they do in the big leagues.

Meanwhile, our minor league Legislature has decided to have you pay rather than choose.
Taxpayers are going to see a significant bump in their tax burdens now that the Governor�s veto of the Transportation Bill has been overridden.

That�s good news if you think that the bonding bill should devote significant resources to Polar Bear exhibits, hiking and biking trails, convention centers, and other local projects instead of high-priority roads and bridges.

�Legislators had an opportunity to demonstrate their commitment to prioritizing State spending by making local projects compete with roads and bridges. Instead, they chose to raise taxes and place the burden of making hard choices on citizens instead of on State Legislators,� said David Strom, President of the Minnesota Free Market Institute.

�Governor Pawlenty was absolutely right when he proposed using General Obligation Bonds to fund roads and bridges. In fact, we believe that he should have gone farther and proposed to use State bonds for State roads, and requiring that all bonding projects have cost-benefit analyses to demonstrate their worth,� Strom said.

�Now that Legislators have decided to raise taxes the bonding bill will have plenty of room for pork-barrel spending, as it always has,� Strom concluded.

Victory for universities, too. Met your match? Sure you will -- every time you fill up. And don't drive less! You'll just cut down their revenues, and they'll raise your taxes again.

It's not the size of taxes that describes government extortion. It's the size of government spending.

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