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Senate Revenue Estimates 14 Million Below House Numbers

May 17, 2017 Common Cents

The Senate Ways and Means Committee met on May 17 to determine revenue estimates for the State’s General and Education Trust Funds, and decided that revenues would likely come in at $4,898.2 million for the State fiscal years (SFY) 2018-2019 biennium. This estimate is $14.1 million below the figure the House Ways and Means Committee produced to inform the House Finance Committee budget process. If these numbers are finalized, the Senate Finance Committee will need to use these lower figures, or add other revenue sources, to build its version of the State Budget. The Senate Ways and Means Committee has not yet created  estimates for Fish and Game and Highway Fund revenues; the Committee will hold a final vote once all estimates are complete. (For more on the role of the Ways and Means Committees and the budget funds, see NHFPI’s Building the Budget resource.)

The new revenue projections may prompt additional changes to the Senate’s version of the State Budget, as the Senate has been using the Governor’s budget as the basis for its work. The Governor’s budget projected $72.9 million more in revenue for the State Budget biennium than the Senate Ways and Means Committee projected. Additionally, the Senate Ways and Means Committee revised estimates for the remainder of SFY 2017, which concludes June 30, down as well relative to the Governor and the more recent House Ways and Means Committee estimates made in May of this year (the House Committee made two estimates, one in March and one in May). As the Governor proposed using surplus revenue from SFY 2017 to fund various priorities, including infrastructure spending, increases to the Rainy Day Fund, and Medicaid payment reconciliations, this reduction of $17.3 million relative to the Governor’s estimate may also constrain Senate decisions regarding modifications to the Governor’s State Budget proposal. To learn more about the contents of the Governor’s proposed budget, see NHFPI’s Issue Brief.

 

Senate Revenue Estimates $14 Million Below House Numbers (PDF)

 

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Elections Highlight Continuing Questions About Keno Revenue

8 Nov 2017

tree with coins

While results are still preliminary, Keno gaming appears to have been legalized in seven cities around New Hampshire as a result of Tuesday’s votes. The margin of victory in Rochester for Keno legalization was reportedly only one vote and may still be subject to change or recount, but voters appear to have legalized Keno gaming in Berlin, Claremont, Laconia, Manchester, Nashua, Rochester, and Somersworth. Voters in Concord, Dover, and Keene voted against Keno gaming legalization. Franklin had legalized Keno gaming previously, and the Portsmouth City Council decided to not put Keno on the ballot. Other municipalities, including the City of Lebanon, may make decisions regarding Keno legalization next year. These results have implications for State policy and finances.