Republican budget puts ideology ahead of people
To the Editor: The Senate Finance Committee meets on May 4 to consider the House Republican budget that is now before the Senate as HB1 and HB2.
The House budget contains significant cuts to revenues, expenditures and services. While New Hampshire is suffering under the severe health, economic and social burdens caused by COVID-19, that budget denies government the funding, resources and flexibility it needs to meet the challenges facing our state. Be it education funding, health care, social services, job creation, affordable housing, property tax relief, etc., the House budget is designed to tear down rather than to build up.
The Republicans favor cutting taxes for wealthy individuals and corporations over building a fair, sustainable revenue stream that benefits us all. An irresponsible approach in any budget cycle, this year it also risks New Hampshire’s ability to qualify for millions of federal aid dollars through the American Rescue Plan.
The state budget process is about financial planning. Republicans are using it to advance social policies that lack sufficient votes, are unpopular with the public and our governor, and can’t stand up to rigorous legislative oversight and scrutiny. Republicans added language to their budget that allows the government to dictate what can and cannot be taught about racism, sexism and implicit bias. They added language that effectively defunds abortion. The Senate is likely to add the language of SB 130 — the most extreme school voucher bill in the country.
This budget doesn’t meet the needs of all Granite Staters. Don’t Republicans care about us?