News and Tribune

Breaking News

Columns

January 23, 2013

Inaugural challenges for Gov. Pence

(Continued)

If there were any doubts about the fledgling administration, they were allayed until Tuesday, when OMB Director Chris Adkins — the architect of Pence’s campaign “Roadmap” and his policy wizard — rolled out the first budget. It was there that the policy cornerstone of the Pence campaign met the realities of Statehouse sausage production and a fitful economy that has seen Indiana’s jobless rate hover in the 8 percent range for more than two years. 

The 10 percent income tax cut which Pence unveiled last July without input or the imprimatur of Speaker Bosma, Senate President David Long or Senate Appropriations Chairman Luke Kenley would serve as the $790 million thrust of the proposed $28 billion biennial budget.

School funding would increase by a tiny 1 percent and Medicaid funding could gobble up 80 percent of the $1.2 billion surplus in the first year alone. That element was creating what Pat Kiely, former Ways & Means chairman and current Indiana Manufacturers Association President, would call a “surplus mirage.”

As the Pence administration began on a cold January morning, the temperature permeated the reaction of legislative fiscal leaders with frosty pragmatism.  

“We’d like to be heroes and cut taxes,” said Kenley. “You also need to be prepared to take care of your priorities and you need to have enough money to do that.”

Said Ways & Means Chairman Tim Brown, “It is on the priority list. I don’t know where it falls right now.”

Essentially, the Pence income tax cut will be held hostage by events and statistics beyond his control until the April revenue forecast is manifest. Thus, the success of the No. 1 Pence priority will be outside of his hand for almost three months. It is a risky proposition for a politician who has aspirations for the White House, possibly as early as 2016. Thus, getting strongly out of the gates is vital in that context.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
LOCAL MAGAZINES
Easter 2014 photos


Click on any photo to purchase it.

SPECIAL CONTENT
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA
2013 Photos of the year


Take a look at our most memorable photos from 2013.