Thursday, December 17, 2009

Not in the Clear Just Yet

While there have been signs of economic recovery here in the Commonwealth, it’s important for the public to know that we’re not in the clear just yet. Though the Patrick Administration would like to have people believing that a slight bump in revenue collection means the economy is turning around, thousands of Massachusetts residents are still unemployed or under employed. The jobless rate still stands at just below 9 percent and quite frankly it’s doubtful that those who are unemployed feel as positive about the future as Governor Patrick does.

At a consensus revenue hearing yesterday, several people representing various organizations and agencies spoke. State revenue officials say they expect to see at least a 3% increase in revenue collections in the next fiscal year. That’s great, but unfortunately we lost about 15% of our tax revenue last fiscal year. So to be blunt, we’re still in the red. We’re not trying to be the bearer of bad news, however we want to make sure people are aware of the fiscal reality here in the Commonwealth. We may be entering a recovery period, but we still have a long way to go until we’re in the clear.

The Minority Leader's office recently released a report that highlights the revenue problems the state faced in Fiscal Year 2009, how those problems led to a structural deficit in Fiscal Year 2010 and what we can expect for Fiscal Year 2011. Click here to view the full report.