Governor Chet Culver, a Democrat, has told the Democrats who hold a majority of seats in the Iowa legislature to trim the state budget plan they’ve drafted. Culver has been making that demand during private meetings with Democratic legislative leaders who are trying to complete the work of the 2007 Iowa Legislative session and adjourn, perhaps as early as this weekend.
Statehouse reporters asked Culver about his concerns this morning. “I’ve been very clear from day one about passing a very fiscally responsible budget, ” Culver says, “and we will do that.” Culver would not specify which areas of the budget should be trimmed, but the governor said his spending ideas aren’t that different from his fellow Democrats in the legislature.
Culver says they’re making progress, and “our fiscal house is going to be in the best shape it’s been in in a decade, I believe, by the time we adjourn.”
“You’re talking about a nearly six-billion-dollar budget, and the good news is we weren’t very far apart to start with,” Culver says. Culver has also asked legislators to set aside enough money to cover new property tax credits to ensure cities and counties don’t have to cut budgets because they’ll be getting less property tax revenue.