|Governor Dennis Daugaard gives budget proposal in Pierre|
|Tuesday, 04 December 2012 15:52|
The governor is also proposing a 3.2% raise for the Board of Regents. He says state lawmakers have never failed to balance a state budget, which shows just how strong South Dakota is.
Daugaard says, "The budget I'm proposing to you Tuesday will be a balanced budget like every budget in the history of our state. Last year we proposed to voters a constitutional amendment to add a clear requirement to our state constitution that requires a balanced budget and this principle is the bedrock of our state's financial strength."
The new budget totals more than $4 billion and would use state, federal, and other funds in the fiscal year beginning July 1st. Daugaard says he believes that furthering our children's education is important, which is why he is asking for a $28 million increase across the board for education, which has some state legislators excited about the future of our education system.
Rep. Mark Kirkeby says, "There's no question that education of our youth, or trade schools, or VO tech, or college, that certainly is our future and there's no question. I am extremely encouraged that we've got some money in the bank."
Still, some on the other side of the aisle say it's not enough. House Democratic Leader Bernie Hunhoff of Yankton said Tuesday that the governor's speech failed to address the need to fund schools adequately. Besides education Daugaard also discussed his plans for setting aside additional money to enhance certain judicial programs, including drug courts.
Daugaard says, "The recommended FY14 budget includes funds to expand drug courts, strengthen probation and parole, and build our capacity to deal with behavioral health and addiction issues."
Senator Craig Tieszen says, "I think that's a big piece of the puzzle. I've been very excited by the results of drug court. I think that's one of the things that we need to do on the front end to deal with our crime problems and our criminals in this state, things that can have better benefits than just locking them up."
The governor says lawmakers will get more details on his budget proposal next month when he delivers his State of the State Address to open the legislative session on January 8th.