The Idaho Spending Index serves to provide a fiscally conservative perspective on state budgeting while providing an unbiased measurement of how Idaho lawmakers apply these values to their voting behavior on appropriations bills. Each bill is analyzed within the context of the metrics below. They receive one (+1) point for each metric that is satisfied by freedom-focused policymaking and lose one (-1) point for each instance in which the inverse is true. The sum of these points composes the score for the bill.
Analyst: Niklas Kleinworth
Bill Description: House Bill 300 appropriates $26,541,800 and 146.00 full-time positions to the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation for fiscal year 2024.
Is the maintenance budget inappropriate for the needs of the state, the size of the agency, or the inflationary environment of the economy? Conversely, is the maintenance budget appropriate given the needs of the state and economic pressures?
This legislation sets the maintenance budget for the Office of Drug Policy at $26,551,900, shrinking relative to the base by 5.3% over the last three years. This change is not due to any reduction in federal grant authority. Rather, it is due to a reduction of both general and dedicated funding.
Does this budget perpetuate or expand state dependence on federal dollars, thereby violating principles of federalism? Conversely, does this budget actively reduce the amount of federal dollars used to balance this budget?
The Division of Vocational Rehabilitation is extremely dependent on funding from the federal government, with 72% of its dollars coming from Washington, DC. Additionally, more than three-quarters of their staff is federally funded. House Bill 300 seeks to grow this dependency by adding $31,900 to increase the state-federal match, expanding the amount of federal funding they could collect.