Grantham Responds to Governor’s Final Budget Proposal
DENVER — Senate President Kevin J. Grantham (R-Canon City) issued the following statement today in response to Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper’s final budget proposal. Grantham said that nothing in the preliminary budget he saw stood out as particularly surprising, though he did fault the Governor for taking a “see no evil” approach to the potential fiscal implications of several big ticket items on the ballot this fall.
“One thing that surprised me about the Governor’s final budget is that he made no effort to anticipate or think-through contingencies if voters next week approve ballot measures that could have significant negative impacts on the state’s economic and fiscal fortunes. In that sense it is an ostrich budget, which conveniently ignores the problems that could be looming, depending on what happens Election Day. Some might argue that he has no obligation to anticipate the likely consequences of events that haven’t happened. But the Governor in last year’s budget made a point of highlighting all the potential budget cutting Colorado might have to do because Republicans passed tax reform, even though those cuts resulted in a budget windfall for the state, yet he now ignores the fiscal and economic problems that could lie ahead if voters pass Amendments 73 or Proposition 109 next week. Otherwise, it was a typical Hickenlooper TBD budget, which left a lot of devilish details yet to be determined.
In fact, in an anti-109 television ad, Hickenlooper claims that passing the measure would result in $260 million in cuts to education and healthcare, yet this pass-the-buck budget blueprint is devoid of any detail about what those alleged cuts might look like, demonstrating that the governor really doesn’t seem to believe his own alarmist rhetoric. The governor’s own budget includes spending growth projections indicating that those funds could be found without requiring any actual cuts.”