More on the Alleged Budget Disaster Looming

Damnit to hell. You try to host a fancy party and get sucked into working because the Governor and everyone else in Frankfort try to bury the bad news on Friday evening. How original.

Here’s Steve Beshear’s complete statement about the projected/alleged $996 Million budget shortfall and the special session he’s calling for June 15th:

“The Consensus Forecasting Group has made clear today the significant budgetary challenge before us. We now face a $996 million shortfall for the General Fund and a $239.1 million shortfall for the Road Fund next budget year, beginning July 1, 2009.

It is the largest budget shortfall in modern Kentucky history. And it represents the third year in a row that projected revenues have not met projected needs in our state – also an unprecedented occurrence. It is our responsibility to address this challenge and do so quickly. Agencies and departments throughout state government that provide vital services need time to adjust their budgets. School districts have to make decisions before the start of another year. Universities and other areas that depend on us need time to plan.

By law, the legislature and I must approve a new budget. So, I will be a calling a special session, starting June 15, to take on that challenge. In the next few days, I will be issuing the official call for the special session and announcing my budget proposal for the General Assembly’s consideration. There will be pain associated with further spending reductions, on top of the nearly $600 million we’ve already cut in the past 18 months. But that’s no different than what families across the Commonwealth also are facing. Our priorities will be holding the line on taxes for working families already struggling to make ends meet; maintaining investments in our school children; preserving commitments to the health care needs of our most vulnerable and the safety of our people.

Now, once again, is the time for us to come together as leaders, regardless of party label, position or branch of government. We must make tough decisions that are fiscally responsible, while being mindful that tough times will not end with this budget. The consensus group’s planning estimate for the next biennium makes clear that we are in the midst of a significant three-year budget challenge. How we handle this coming year’s budget will, in large part, determine what resources we have to deal with future budget challenges.

I’m confident that, as before, we will come together in the best interests of our state and our people.”

Never to be outdone, here’s Greg Stumbo’s statement about the same:

“Today’s forecast should not be a surprise, given the extended downturn in the nation’s economy. The main hope is that economic conditions are beginning to improve and we can now begin the long, slow climb back to prosperity. Fortunately, the federal stimulus money will help cushion the impact of this deficit, though no one should expect the next two years to be easy. Our goal in the House is to continue doing all we can to maintain essential health services and education spending, and we will try to do just that during the special session. As I have said before, now is not the time to raise taxes on Kentucky’s working families; just as they have had to tighten their belts, so will we as a state.”

Don’t even have the energy or desire to bitch and moan about this. Because we all know it’s a flustercuck waiting to happen.

So. You do it. Commence the bitching and moaning.

Got This Press About Ten Minutes Ago…

Since I’m at a party, I’m just gonna give you the full release. My apologies for not summarizing things.

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 29, 2009

The President today declared a major disaster exists in the Commonwealth of Kentucky and ordered Federal aid to supplement Commonwealth and local recovery efforts in the area struck by severe storms, tornadoes, flooding, and mudslides during the period of May 3-20, 2009.The President’s action makes Federal funding available to affected individuals in the counties of Breathitt, Floyd, Owsley, and Pike.Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster.

Federal funding also is available to State and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged by the severe storms, tornadoes, flooding, and mudslides in the counties of Ballard, Breathitt, Carlisle, Clay, Crittenden, Floyd, Grayson, Hickman, Jackson, Knott, Lawrence, Lee, Leslie, Letcher, Madison, Magoffin, Marshall, Owsley, Perry, Pike, Russell, and Trigg.

Federal funding is also available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures for the entire Commonwealth.

W. Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Department of Homeland Security, named Kim. R. Kadesch as the Federal Coordinating Officer for Federal recovery operations in the affected area.

FEMA said additional designations may be made at a later date if requested by the Commonwealth and warranted by the results of further damage assessments.

FEMA said that residents and business owners who sustained losses in the designated counties can begin applying for assistance tomorrow by registering online at http://www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA(3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing and speech impaired. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: FEMA (202) 646-4600.

Thank goodness!

Watch Comment on Kentucky Tonight!

Don’t forget it. Comment on Kentucky. KET. 8:00 P.M. Eastern.

Scheduled guests:

  • Roger Alford, Associated Press
  • Jack Brammer, Herald-Leader
  • Nancy Rodriguez, Courier-Journal

Remember, you can always create your own drinking game if necessary. Example: When Stephenie Steitzer is on, we drink each time she mentions the giant rock in the Ohio river. Could do something similar tonight, but you may die of alcohol poisoning if you use the word “gambling.”

Early Friday Evening Of State Budget Disaster

Enjoy the weekend. We’re off to a very fancy birthday party at which we will eat fancy cake and other lady treats. In other words, it’s a small gathering we put together for someone special – at their house, using their stuff (aren’t we thoughtful!) – with a cake we made and maybe some cheap wine. Ah, a day in the life of our elitist circle.

Public Policy Polling is calling Daniel Mongiardo out for his silly little push poll. [Public Policy Polling via Barefoot & Progressive]

John Yarmuth and John Conyers will host a public discussion on Single Payer health care tomorrow. 8:30 A.M. to 12:30 P.M. at Indiana University Southeast in the Hoosier Room. 4201 Grant Line Road, New Albany. [KYHealthCare]

FEAR! State Budget Shortfall Is Gonna Kill Us All! WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE OF THE POVERTY! The Consensus Forecasting Group says the state has a $996 million budget problem. [Everyone]

A Teamsters union leader called Jerry Abramson a snake. And said that the union will be watching and picketing the Mayor’s every move after some Teamsters members were laid off.  We love them for their snark. [WLKY]

Heather has written her second ‘Southern Belles: Louisville’ story and it’s hilarious. You may pee a little. Just saying. [Hilarity]

Related juicy gossip: Jeff dumped Shea, dated Katie King (think we saw them together on election night 2008, he was sweaty), dumped her. Good for Katie. Shea also dated Aaron Yarmuth, the Congressman’s son, for a brief time. Weeeeeird. Hopefully we see some of this drama on the teevee! [Juicy Gossip]

Ready for proof no one has a clue whether or not gambling has a chance at life in Frankfort? It’s not just us getting the run around. It really is like Groundhog Day (our birthday) all over again. [Ronnie Ellis]

Ever wanted to review a butt load of old press releases from Mitch McConnell? Here’s your chance. [Old McConnell Releases]

Since it’s Friday, how about watching this hilarious video? We. Cannot. Breathe. Pee. Alert. [HE GONE!]

Jane Beshear Launches Kentucky Experience

First Lady Jane Beshear has launched a new website all about the “Kentucky Experience.”

“We are assembling – in one spot – the best of Kentucky for the world to see,” said Mrs. Beshear. “Our visitors will be able to walk through The Kentucky Experience, find out what’s available in Kentucky, and then make plans to visit that specific region of the commonwealth. Visitors also will be able to see how bourbon and wine are made, and purchase Kentucky-made products and food,” she said. “In essence, it is a mini- world’s fair focusing entirely on all things Kentucky.”


Clicky clicky to visit the site.

Appears to be a great thing for visitors to the Commonwealth.

But… the logo reminds us of the state’s Homeland Security logo. Which is somewhat creepy.

Jim Anderson Stivers Is A Racist?

Who knew?

I mean, we all know the crazy crap he pulls against everyone in the Commonwealth – including us, personally. Especially with the conspiracy theories.

But he’s a racist? Apparently, in his reality, all the scary Mexicans who work on horse farms are magically able to vote for Steve Beshear.

Peep this comment he left today:


Very interesting indeed. Because, uh, illegal aliens cannot vote.

Conspiracy theories galore.

Puzzled Thoughts On Our Fancy Governor

Try as we might, we cannot believe (still!) how Governor Steve Beshear has put himself between a rock and a hard spot with this lose/lose situation.

By openly discussing a special legislative session – and then failing to call it – he appears weak.

If he calls the special session and can’t get anything passed – he appears weak.

If he calls it and King David Williams makes him his bitch – he appears weak.

So… What’s it gonna be?