Mayor McLean breaks promise, raises property taxes in new budget

Fred Birnbaum Articles, SMART Boise Leave a Comment

In early June, Boise Mayor Lauren McLean distributed a news release in which she pledged not to raise taxes in the midst of a pandemic. Within a month, the first-term mayor has broken her promise. McLean’s first budget, released last week, increases property taxes and wastes millions of taxpayer dollars. And, unfortunately for overtaxed Boiseans, the mayor’s plan offers no …

Little’s budgetary response to the virus is a good start

Fred Birnbaum Articles Leave a Comment

On his Tuesday morning conference call with legislators,  Gov. Brad Little reminded lawmakers that his administration is paying much closer attention to the state’s budget and fiscal health than his predecessor. Idaho ended the 2020 legislative session with a General Fund appropriation increase of about 4%, which was about half the spending increase that former Gov. Butch Otter left as …

Senate Bill 1420 – Department of Labor

Fred Birnbaum 2020 Idaho Spending Index Leave a Comment

When this agency’s request came up for FY20, we noted the following last year: This appropriation adds a major new line item, a JOBCorps pilot project with an appropriation of $4.3 million. This appropriation is a federal grant, with 100 percent of the appropriation provided by the federal government and therein lies the concern.  Page 5-46 of the FY20 Legislative …

Senate Bill 1418 – Department of Health and Welfare, Medicaid

Fred Birnbaum Uncategorized Leave a Comment

Bill description: Department of Health and Welfare, Medicaid Fiscal Year 2021 appropriation  Rating: -1 No program is as large nor is as big a threat to the fiscal health of Idaho as the state’s Medicaid program.  In Fiscal Year 1999, total Medicaid was appropriated $533 million. In Fiscal Year 2018, the appropriation was $2.3 billion. That number climbed to $2.45 …

Senate Bill 1416 — Homestead exemption increase

Fred Birnbaum 2020 Senate bill ratings Leave a Comment

Bill description: SB 1416 would increase the maximum homestead exemption from $100,00 to $120,000 for tax year 2020. Beginning in the 2021 tax year, the exemption would be indexed annually to reflect cost-of-living fluctuations. Rating: -1 Does it directly or indirectly create or increase any taxes, fees, or other assessments? Conversely, does it eliminate or reduce any taxes, fees, or …