Democrats offer budget that restores cuts

Wednesday, May 12, 2010 at 4:39pm

House Democrats offered their own alternative state budget plan Wednesday, calling for spending from the state's rainy day fund to prevent cuts proposed by Senate Republicans.

"The budget proposal offered by Senate Republicans is unacceptable and shows a fundamental lack of compassion for Tennesseans. What Tennesseans need is a budget that will lead them to recovery, not ruin," House Democratic leader Gary Odom said.

House Speaker Kent Williams, meanwhile, denounced the senators, specifically Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, as irresponsible and unscrupulous.

“I think in the Senate, it’s more politics. I guarantee if we didn’t have members running for governor and Congress, we would have already passed this budget. It’s a political statement, and you just don’t play political games at the stake of our citizens," said Williams, himself a Republican.

Out of the rainy day fund, Democrats say they would restore $34 million in teacher pay cuts, $6 million in cuts in farm investments, $100 million in state employee pay bonuses and $3.5 million in cuts to public safety. Republican senators proposed those reductions Tuesday to eliminate planned tax increases by Gov. Phil Bredesen.

"Our rainy day fund is for a rainy day," Speaker Pro Tem Lois DeBerry said, "and here in Tennessee, it's raining."

Williams also said it's morally wrong to make more spending cuts and leave $500 million in the state's reserve funds.

“Morally, how can we do that and go home with $500 million in the bank. I just don’t get it. I just don’t get it and I hope everyone in here will toe the line and hang tough and do what’s best for the people of Tennessee and not give in to these pressures.”

In response, Ramsey told the Chattanooga Times Free Press: "I think we’re doing exactly what the citizens of the state want us to. We’re living within our means. We’re balancing our budget through cuts and not through tax increases.”

14 Comments on this post:

By: shinestx on 5/12/10 at 3:53

My, my, my... the names are flying from the Dem-wits! We simply cannot have cuts in government programs... oh no! That's for everyone else... not the government. Silly people! Now pay us more, and tighten your belts even more. Do these people realize that there is no rainy day fund. It's like the Social Security "Lockbox". If there were a rainy day fund, then why is the state $1.5 Billions in the red?

I suppose one of our leftwing nut geniuses will give us a great explanation.

By: rock holliday on 5/12/10 at 4:28

if they would have passed the tax increase like they should have.and mind you the tax increase was only for high dollar frivilous crap that only repubes god forbid that.we wouldn't have to dig into any fund cause the money would be there.the repubes would let the whole state sink like they did the entire country before god fobid we dig into our petty cash drawer.if it's for a rainy day then what the hell would you call these days i don't see any the repubes keep saying is other words don't piss on my boot and tell me it's raining

By: shinestx on 5/12/10 at 7:03

My name for the Dem-wits is far more creative than yours for Republicans (wtf is a repube?). Anyhooo, assuming you had some level of maturity not obvious in your post, I'd first say, "Who do you think manufactures that "high dollar crap" that "only repubes buy"?" What do you think Al Gore bought for his new California home? And of course, you know that a majority of adults in Belle Meade are registered Dem-wits? Same goes for the Nashville power structure, but I'm sure you knew that. Duh! It's a Dem-witted county. But I'll bet you vote for Dem-wits in every election (without even reading their platforms) because they're "real people like me"... Dupe! Now back to who pays the taxes... We all do!! And thanks to your boy, Obama, we're all (yeppers, you too!) are going to pay at least 25% more in taxes. So what you need to do to see how much that will cost you is take the amount of taxes (income, sales, excise, property, etc.) and divide it by 4. The answer will be what you will pay (and probably more). You will pay those taxes that you think only Republicans will pay. That's the funny thing.

Now, back to a legitimate way to fixing the budget fiasco that the Dem-wits have worsened by a factor of 4, just since the last year of the Bush administration.

Disgraceful, but it is who the Dem-wits are... and Americans thought they voted for "change". The jokes on the Dem-wits. A big "Duh!" to you, and btw, it's spelled b-e-c-a-u-s-e. What are you, twelve years old?

By: shinestx on 5/12/10 at 7:09

Oh and you can tell me anytime who it was that first said the comment that you just parroted. You know, the one about pissing on your boot. Is that supposed to make you sound intelligent? Cause (using your spelling) it doesn't.

You aren't the complete idiot that you seem to be in your post (please, I hope I'm not on the same roads as someone so stupid). However, you clearly missed the whole point about the so-called rainy day fund. Um, here's the point: IT DOES NOT EXIST! Whatever you call it, it doesn't matter. Do you actually believe it's called "rainy day" because it's raining today? Agghh! Please tell me you're not this stupid... oh, but that's right, you're a Dem-wit. Look at Greece, and you'll see your utopia. The rest of us who actually use our brains will be fighting the likes of you the whole way now that the majority are awake (yes, a majority of conservatives, per Rasmussen and Gallup by 2:1). God November is going to be fun... and I mean November 2010, 2012, 2014, and beyond.

By: idgaf on 5/13/10 at 4:03

What do these morons not understand about stop spending.

Get rid of pre-K for starters.

They are supposed to spend what they have not what they want then rob the differance.

By: Dragon on 5/13/10 at 6:26

We haven't seen the bill for the flooding yet. THAT is where the rainy day funds are needed.

By: xhexx on 5/13/10 at 6:31

"Pre-K" is just the PC term for subsidized daycare for the entitlement class. It should be the FIRST thing to go.

By: AmyLiorate on 5/13/10 at 7:21

Gary Odom, government is no adept at being "compassionate".

It is a strange beast to be compassionate on one hand and wielding the power to throw people in jail and take from them with the other hand. No?

It is NOT the purpose of government to be charity. Just as it is not the purpose of government to be your moral (spiritual) leader.

By: govskeptic on 5/13/10 at 7:53

Instead of a solution this seems to be more of a "please
love me" cope out! Democratic speaker (elected by) Williams
needs to worry about his house and not the Senate!

By: pswindle on 5/13/10 at 8:29

It is time to give Ramsey the boot. It takes money to run the government. The republicans are always against taxes, but when unfortunate tragedies happen who will the GOP want to come in to rescue, of couse, the government. I heard a republican say after the rains, "Where is the government?" President Obama had FEMA on the ground running in helping our people. I bet TN will receive more tax money that the whole state paid last year. You know that the insurnace companies will find every loophole to keep from paying.

By: Kosh III on 5/13/10 at 8:59

""Pre-K" is just the PC term for subsidized daycare for the entitlement class. It should be the FIRST thing to go."

So instead of the kids being in school while the parents work, you'd prefer that a parent stay home, take care of the kids and maybe have to get food stamps or other assistance to make ends meet?
I'd rather give daycare and let a person work and pay taxes.

By: Dragon on 5/13/10 at 10:43

By: pswindle on 5/13/10 at 9:29
"The republicans are always against taxes, but when unfortunate tragedies happen who will the GOP want to come in to rescue, of couse, the government."

The Democrats want to use the "rainy day" fund to balance the budget. How dare anyone suggest the government be inconvenienced by the recession?

Quick! Spend the money before someone wants it for flood recovery.

By: gdiafante on 5/13/10 at 11:41

It seems to me that the rainy day fund was established for times like these, just like people put money into a savings account in case their income is reduced, eliminated or an unexpected event occurs. I would think they could put some to the budget and the flood.

And I'd keep pre-K...tennesseans need more education, not less.

By: TharonChandler on 5/14/10 at 11:57

Having a Condition such as this is Not the Fault of the victim (Re: Kent Wms fainted?), and can be very expensive, and physicly demanding. I myself must sleep about 9hrs per night and eat a Big Breakfast within a few hours of getting up in the morning. I can act normal and am still tuff looking and mentally accute though I will start to shake noticeably if I loose rest and nutrition. Good luck, from 17 California.