In The News: Budget

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Editorial: Doom in 2012?

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Apr 18 2010

Worcester Telegram

Forget the Mayan prophecy of doom for December 2012. The far more likely catastrophe, according to a recent report from the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, is a financial one that will hit with the state budget some months earlier, when the fiscal 2012 budget is put together. MTF warns that by constructing a fiscal 2011 budget that relies heavily on one-time federal funds, Gov. Deval Patrick is setting the state up for serious and widespread budget cuts a year later.
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Pay at many government jobs is higher than in private sector

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Apr 17 2010

By Steve Adams, Stoughton Journal / Gatehouse News Service

For many years, generous benefits were defended as a necessary incentive to attract applicants to lower-paying government jobs. "That may, in fact, have been true at one point, but it's now a myth," said Michael Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Association. "The explanation no longer holds water."
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House spending plan cuts local aid $234M

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Apr 15 2010

By Matt Murphy, The Lowell Sun

Michael Widmer, the president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, called the House budget an "improvement" over Patrick's because it relies less on one-time revenue. "From my perspective, it's better to have a lower bottom line and not rely on the rainy day account because we're going to run out of one-time money in fiscal 2012," Widmer said.
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House tenders a $27.8b budget

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Apr 15 2010

By Noah Bierman, The Boston Globe

Michael J. Widmer, the president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, a business-backed nonprofit, said of the House budget, "This is an honest reflection of the fiscal straits that the Commonwealth is in.''
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Mass. House releases $27.8B state spending plan; includes $234 million in cuts to local aid Read more at the Washington Examine

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Apr 15 2010

By Steve LeBlanc, The Washington Examiner / AP

Michael Widmer, president of the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, said the House budget reflects the state's austere revenue situation. "From a fiscal point of view, this is an improvement on the governor's budget," said Widmer, who defended the House's proposed local aid cuts. "They need to share in the pain given our fiscal realities."
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House budget could spell 1,500 layoffs, slashes higher ed spending

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Apr 15 2010

By Kyle Cheney and Michael Norton, Dover-Sherborn Press / State House New Service

President Michael Widmer, focusing his praise on the committee's decision to stop spending state reserve funds that he said will be needed in fiscal 2012. "The cuts are going to be difficult but they're absolutely essential," Widmer said. Asked about the local aid cut, Widmer said, "They need to share in the pain, given our fiscal realities. Human services has borne the brunt of cuts to date."
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House budget raises state spending 3.2 percent; cuts local aid $234 million

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Apr 14 2010

By Michael Norton, Beverly Citizen / State House News Service

Immediately after the committee vote, Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation President Michael Widmer said he expected most of the local aid cut to come from education allocations under the Chapter 70 program and agreed with the assessment that the cut represents the biggest cut in state school aid of the recession cycle.
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Mass. lawmakers moving ahead with $28 billion budget despite $195 million to $295 million new shortfall predicted by Gov. Deval

Apr 6 2010

By Dan Ring, The Republican

Michael J. Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, said the new spending is difficult to explain in light of the budget problems, but it is logical. "It's a little bit of moving money around," Widmer said. "That's standard."
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Senate’s Ways and Means chief won’t seek re-election

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Mar 25 2010

By Hillary Chabot, The Boston Herald

"There's going to be a record number of new legislators. It's going to be wild," said Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation president Michael Widmer - who worked with Panagiotakos on several difficult budgets during the fiscal crisis.
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State’s $295m shortfall kicks off political blame game

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Mar 20 2010

By Michael Levenson, The Boston Globe

"Clearly, MassHealth is a significant share of the shortfall,'' said Michael J. Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation. "But I don't know what's causing it.''
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