Gov. Scott unveils budget with no new taxes for fiscal 2023

By Brent Addleman | The Center Square

Gov. Phil Scott unveiled what he said was a balanced fiscal 2023 budget that does not raise taxes while using federal federal funds to pay for a variety of new spending initiatives.

The governor’s $7.7 billion budget proposal calls for growing and strengthening the workforce, giving kids more opportunities, and helping communities recover from the pandemic and thrive in the future, Scott said in a news release.

Phil Scott for Vermont

Gov. Phil Scott

The budget, according to the release, will provide tax relief to state residents as there are surpluses in the general and education funds on top of federal funding the state received as part of the American Rescue Plan Act.

“In my 21 years in public life, there has never been a more transformative moment,” Scott said in the release. “We have, within our grasp, the chance to combine good ideas, thoughtful legislation, and unprecedented financial resources into a better, brighter future – where there are good jobs, affordable homes, and every community is thriving; where every kid is getting the best education, whether they go to the largest school or the smallest; where families keep more of what they earn; and where a healthy and vibrant economy in all 14 counties allows us to protect the vulnerable and invest in the things we care about most.”

The budget, according to the release, calls for spending $2 billion in the general fund, $326 million in the transportation fund, and another $1.9 million in the education fund. The general fund features a $234 million surplus, according to Scott, while the education fund has a $90 million surplus.

“As you know, last year we received over $1 billion from the American Rescue Plan Act, which I proposed splitting into five major initiatives: broadband and cell service; housing; climate change mitigation; water, sewer and stormwater infrastructure; and economic recovery,” Scott said.

Scott said the budget features a payment of $394 million to fully fund the state’s retirement program obligations and reduces long-term debt. The governor is urging the Legislature to “retire $22 million of transportation borrowing and pay off another $20 million in general obligation bonds” for capital projects. Scott said the move would save taxpayers millions in interest payments in the coming years.

In the budget address, Scott pointed to 24,000 lost jobs since February 2020, saying it is “larger than the population of every city and town in Vermont other than Burlington.

Scott said the loss was a “massive piece of our economy,” and said he wants the Legislature to focus on job creation and job retention to “reverse these trends and secure the brighter future we all want to build.”

The budget calls for a $1 million investment in the state’s internship program. Scott said he plans to add an additional $1 million in grants to support adults enrolling in training programs who do not have a college degree.

The budget, according to the release, calls for a $15 million investment to retain nurses, and directs an additional $18 million to train, retain, and recruit health-care and mental health workers. An additional $10 million would be spent to reduce education costs for students seeking training in the trades.

Housing is also a focus of the governor’s budget.

“And with another $25 million for VHIP, we can continue to transform rundown or vacant units into livable homes,” Scott said. “To see how well this program is working, just ask any of the families who have moved from homelessness into newly renovated apartments across the state, from Brattleboro to Bennington, Springfield to Rutland, Barre to Lyndonville, and beyond.”

Scott, according to the release, is asking for an additional $105 million investment for affordable, mixed-income housing in the state.

The budget, according to the release, will help Vermont compete with other states for the cost of living and tax burdens.

Scott proposed $50 million in tax relief in the budget, according to the release, which would exempt military families from state taxes and help retirees and low-income workers. The budget would also aid younger workers and families with student loan interest reductions and an increase to the child and dependent care credits.

Image courtesy of Phil Scott for Vermont

5 thoughts on “Gov. Scott unveils budget with no new taxes for fiscal 2023

  1. No new taxes huh Phil? So where does the federal money come from do you know? These progressives are so sickening. We have surpluses everywhere yet we have how much in unfunded liabilities? If Phil actually ran his business that he received millions selling there would be no business at all. So sad that especially after he signed the voter cheating bill into law HE will be the last R elected statewide in this now crappy state .

  2. Gee, I hope you can balance things with an extra BILLION dollars.

    Was that the Billion dollars where, you, Leahy, Sanders and Jeffords all got on the phone and made fun of Trump because you didn’t get the money yet?

    Oh that was another BILLION Dollars?

    Printing press releases like this without any reporting or another article shining some light on things is a derelict of proper press.

    This is just more handouts to those connected to the Montpelier gravy train.

    He won’t be able to run after this election, there will be no more free money and Covid will have been found out for the scam that it was.

    If things were fiscally responsible, we’d have a Billion dollar rainy day fund of extra moneyl

  3. Hey Governor, I’d be smiling if Vermont had a ” balanced budget “, kind of like with every
    taxpayer is doing year after year, even with your federal funds it will get squandered……

    Vermont is one of the smallest states, with some of the highest taxes…..why ??, Vermont is
    always bragging at being ” first ” on tons of foolish things, how about bragging about being one
    of the lowest taxed states……………… Nah, liberal in charge …….. how pathetic !!

  4. Good Grief! Even bernie sanders could balance a budget, no state tax increases with a 1,000,000,000.00 of federal taxpayer revenue being given to Vermont.
    Atta Boy, Phil. Something to hang your hat on.
    In 1-3 years, show us how you balance a budget with no new taxes.

    • Make that $10,100,000,000.00 of federal taxpayer revenue being given to Vermont.

      First priority: Pay down the unfunded pension liabilities (only $4.5 Billion +-) and put the pension funds in the control of the individuals who earned them. Let them invest their nest eggs AND accept responsibility for their own Return On Investment (ROI).

      Stop using Vermont taxpayers as a ROI guarantor.

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