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Key lawmakers Recommend Smaller State Budget
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The Joint Legislative Budget Committee is recommending a decrease in state spending for the next fiscal year. The proposal will likely be a blueprint for what the legislature will do.

The 14 member committee is made up of some of the most influential Representatives and Senators.

Their budget proposal involves spending more than 6-billion dollars but with total spending declining by more than 100-million dollars compared to the current fiscal year.

Speaker of the House Phillip Gunn of Clinton says their budget also puts 622-million dollars in the state's rainy day fund.

"We have got money ins reserves to be used for any deficits that might occur in 2015. For re-appropriation in 2016. Or for reserves for 2017. So I believe us to be in great financial shape," Gunn said.

The budget also recommends increased K-12 spending to fund the recent teacher pay raise but most every other department in the state would see level or declining funding.

The proposal does not include a tax cut that was suggested by Governor Phil Bryant, but Gunn says that is not off the table.

Democratic Senator Hob Bryan, who is not a member of the committee, says the proposal makes no sense while state revenue increases.

"They are putting money in the bank and claiming somehow that is good management. Leaving these huge amounts of money in the bank while leaving children uneducated and leaving roads crumbling," Bryan said.

Bryan says Democrats will release a counter proposal later this week.