What do we cut to balance the budget?

Chet Brokaw from Bloomberg Businessweek reports:

Some candidates for governor and the Legislature predicted next year’s budget gap would be $100 million or more, but Dilges (state budget director Jason Dilges) said he doubts the gap will be that large.

The 2013 budget year, which begins in July 2012, will be particularly difficult because all stimulus aid will have ended, which means state money will have to be used to replace federal money that has helped balance the budget in the past three years, Dilges said. Ongoing state revenues are not covering ongoing state spending, he said.

“Some day we’re going to come to the realization that we have no stimulus left and we either need to reduce our expenditures or we have to increase our revenues,” Dilges said.

The clock is ticking and we either need to come up with a way to bring in more revenue or cut expenses,  before the ‘gift’ of the stimulus aid runs out.

In preparing his budget request, Rounds asked all state agencies to consider asking for 10 percent less than they are authorized to spend this year. Dilges said some agencies were able to meet that request, but others were not because they run federal aid programs that cannot be cut.

MikeH started a discussion about some of the programs that the stimulus help fund these past few years.

Here is link to the current years’ budget as the Governor proposed it.

What do we cut?  How do we  increase revenue?

22 Replies to “What do we cut to balance the budget?”

  1. anoonymous

    You mean our spending exceeds our revenue? That is impossible since we have had R's running things and they are fiscally conservative.

  2. ymous

    How about adjusting ag land to appropiate values. Sioux Falls is taxed at market levels and farm ground is about 25% of value and at a much lower levi rate.

    Tax free fuel and tax free parts for farmers is another good place to start. It's not a tax increase, it equal application of the taxes needed to fund government.

    Cut spending in every area across the board.

    Have internet businesses pay sales tax like us brick and mortar businesses. Level the playing field.

  3. Michael (Constant Co

    If we take this situation as an opportunity to look for new revenue, we'll only postpone needful (if difficult) decisions about what areas state government has overstepped its bounds.

    When it comes to state finances, they are not unlike household finances. One cannot always find another job (revenue stream) but one can usually find things (expenses) which are non-essential and could be done without.

  4. Anonymous

    Cut all taxpayer money to PBS, state fair, and GF&P. Reduce the number of FTEs. Go through each department budget line by line and eliminate all unnecessary programs.

  5. ip

    You dorks have seized power.

    Change the constitution, go to a unicameral legislature, cut the number of counties to 33, offer community outreach with mobile and online services. Design Bookmobile/CT scanner-type trucks to service remote areas.

    Add <a>heritage languages to schools. Teach high school men and women in separate classrooms dressed in business casual. Engage high schoolers in administration with a voting member. Eliminate middle schools.

    The smoking ban will drive gamblers to the Internet. Tax online poker. Grow hemp. Join wildlife compacts with the tribes to raise grass-fed bison on lands connected with corridors. Identify contributors to non-point pollution and fine the hell out of them.

    Help tribes secede from South Dakota instead of competing for resources.

    End aid to ethanol and grow oilstocks like hemp, recycle plastics for fuel, grow ponderosa pine as a crop but remove doghair pine from public lands to restore historic aspen habitat.

    Stupid state.

  6. springer

    Ask the lower level state employees where to cut in their departments. They are the ones who know where the excess and wasteful spending is. The department heads are more interested in protecting their turf and their own importance to really do any serious budget cutting. Then listen to these lower level state employees and implement the savings recommended. There is much work at the state level that could be done via computers and mail instead of traveling with all its attendant expenses and waste of time.

  7. duggersd

    ymous, your comment about taxing internet sales is a good one. Our biggest tax source is sales tax. In order to increase the tax collections, we need to increase sales, or go after sales that are not currently taxed. I used to work in a call center and when we sold something to someone in a different state, we had to charge the sales tax of that state, and I think even that city. I really do not see a difference in internet sales. And that does level the playing field.

  8. Darrin Holien

    On way to increase to increase revenue is check out the story last night on KSFY. Out in Harding County, they are sitting on one of the most vast oil supplies in the United States. We have no state geologists to go out and see how much oil is really out there. Hire a couple of these geologist, much like what North Dakota has done and let the oil companies come out and drill. Then watch the money roll into Pierre.

  9. Go Big R

    I think all the phones and computers should be removed from goverment offices. Everyone wants smaller government if you need to do business with the state drive to Pierre or send a letter. Can you imagine the money that would save? Schools should also get rid of the over 2,200 buses they operate every day. The state can not hire a geologist–do not want to add any more ftes.

  10. grudznick


    No hiring of state geologists because thats more henious FTEs!!!! Contract geologists! DUH!

    Turn out the lights. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve ridden in the transit bus past a state building that had all the lights on. And stop with the wasteful christmas decorations!

  11. grudznick

    I’m sure my transit bus is fully funded by the people like me who pay to ride it. Although I am often the only person on it, I’m sure there are other days it is completely full.

    Also, I notice that link goes to the proposed budget for the last year not to what the legislature passed. We should be cutting things (not my transit bus or meals on wheels) from the appropriated budget and not the proposed budget. I think if we chop at the wrong tree we might not clear the proper forest.

  12. Go Big R

    Grudznick you comment to cut things “but not my transit bus or meals on wheels” is the same old song and dance. Cut anything in goverment but not something that I use or need. If you ride around in a empty bus someone else is paying the bill.

  13. Trish

    The lower end of state employees know exactly where the cuts should be made. But no one has asked them anything. Springer you are correct. Too many supervisors that sit around and do nothing is where we can start.

  14. Anon

    IP — what state to you live in? Are these ideas implemented in your state?

    That said — I agree (and it pains me to say that) with your first paragraph. I never understood why a sparsely populated state like SD had Senate and House districts that are contiguous. Unicameral is the way to go.

    As for the rest of your post, IP — it’s wacko, as usual.


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