Careful, now, on the surplus | Arkansas Blog

Sunday, July 9, 2006

Careful, now, on the surplus

Posted By on Sun, Jul 9, 2006 at 6:16 AM

Brummett explains why the state surplus isn't necessarily so shocking and why the legislature should move carefully in response. (He doesn't mention, but could, that while $400 million is certainly a large figure it is not so large when viewed in the context of a $5 billion budget.) If income slows and needs rise, then the taxing and spending won't be so far apart.

That's why tax policy should be based on fairness and the long-term sufficiency of revenue-generating devices, not on a lucky couple of years.

Compare it to your household budget. If you received a bonus this year, would you be comfortable taking a wage reduction next year?

That's different, you say. Not so much. Households need to save for retirement. Governments might do well to save for rainy days, particularly since human needs tend to rise as economic growth and government income wane.

 


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