Republican lawmakers reject republican State Auditor Dave Vaudt’s assertion that their state budget plan is setting the stage for a major tax increase or major state budget cuts the following year. Senate Republican Leader Stewart Iverson of Dows says it just makes sense to clean out the state’s cash reserve this year rather than the other options. Iverson says he also has an accounting degree and using the state’s savings up is preferable to raising taxes. Iverson says the state budget will be buoyed by an improving economy. Iverson says republicans believe they’ll be able to “grow” themselves out of budget problems with increased tax revenues from newly-employed Iowans. Senate President Jeff Lamberti, a republican from Ankeny, says republicans will not let the budget go haywire. Lamberti says there’s nothing republicans are doing with this year’s budget that will force a tax increase next year. He says the auditor fails to acknowledge that republicans have demonstrated a willingness to cut state spending, if they have to. The state budget plan republicans have drafted spends about three percent less than democrat Governor Tom Vilsack recommended.
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