The Skids Are Greased
Mike Miller and Mike Busch are predicting that Governor O’Malley will get his tax package passed by the special session. The only point were taxpayers seem likely to win are in a continuation of the exemption of health club memberships and property management fees from a state sales tax.
The good news is that slots appear to be dead during this session though I’ll go out on a very short, very thick limb and predict Republicans will support slots in the regular session.
As we’ve noted before, the special session can’t really make cuts in the budget as that budget hasn’t been submitted yet. The O’Malley administration is portraying nipping around the edges of the egregious Thornton education mandates as a cut. Sorry, a decrease in the rate of growth does not equate to a cut. Slowing down the fiscal equivalent of The Creature that Ate Sheboygan may be laudable and it does go to the heart of the alleged “structural deficit” but don’t insult us by calling it a cut.
Oddly enough, the jurisdictions that will gain money under the new Thornton allocations will be the only jurisdictions in the state that voted for O’Malley. Go figure.