The Budget - FY19: $5.86 Billion

Vermont spends $5.8 billion to support a population of 626,000. That's about $9,200 per person. FY17 numbers put us in the top ten for per capita spending. 34.9% of that $5.8 billion comes from the Feds and about $130 million comes from the sale of the states general obligation bonds. The rest is taxes and fees.

Since FY13 the average annual growth of the budget has been 2%.

When discussing the state's budget it is important to keep the three major funds in perspective. They are: the General Fund (GF), the Education Fund (EF) and the Transportation Fund (TF).

  • GF - decreased from 26.9% of total to 22.1% of total budget.
  • EF - dependent on local school budget decisions.
  • TF - subject to declining gas revenues as vehicles become more efficient or are electric or natural gas powered.

Here's a PDF of the original presentation.

The FY19 Pie Charts

There's always pie charts. Here they are:

Revenues vs. Expenditures

The JFO almost always presents what is called the Alligator Chart. This chart shows the projected difference between revenues and expenditures. If we continue as we are, the state is projected to spend more than it receives. A gap between revenues and expenditures develops, and grows. Because we always have a balanced budget, we find a way to close that projected gap each year, but we do not do it by making the kind of long-term changes that bring future revenues inline with future expenditures.

  • FY20 projected gap is 2.5% or $45 to $50 million.
  • FY21 is $60 million
  • FY22 is $90 million

Where does the FY19 GF money go?

  • Medicaid $389 million
  • Correction $146 million
  • Teachers Retirement/OPEB (Other Post Employment Benefits) $132 million
  • Children and Families $97 million
  • Higher Ed $87 million
  • Debt Service $72 million

Tax Expenditures

Tax expenditure are expenditures made through the tax system, rather than through appropriations. They include the various exemptions to taxes like the sales tax. They include tax credits and the income sensitivity rebate. It's money the state could be collecting, but doesn't. It amounts to $479 million, 57% of which is in the sales tax area. There are many sales tax exemptions.

FY20 Issues

  • Continued Federal Uncertainty
    • Health Care
    • Social Programs
    • Environmental Issues
  • Balancing the Budget - That Alligator Chart.
  • Funding the Clean Water Innitiative
  • The Long Term Liabilities - pension funds, etc.