The Executive Appropriations Committee met Thursday, February 11, and Friday, February 12. The committee heard subcommittee budget reports and priority requests. Subcommittee budget reports reflect the priorities of funding requests for ongoing and one-time funding. Click each subcommittee link to see the list of requests. Executive Appropriations Committee will consider each of the requests and revenue numbers to put together a final budget for FY22.
The Business, Economic Development, and Labor Appropriations subcommittee budget prioritizes defunded bills and agency building blocks from the last session. The committee focused on restoration while preparing the requests, highlighting agency requests. Numbers one through twenty-one on the request list is agency requests and includes targeted funding increases for employees.
The Executive Offices and Criminal Justice subcommittee budget prioritize restoring budget cuts made during the 2020 special sessions. The subcommittee’s requests prioritize funding to address recruitment and retention. The chairs recognized this is a theme throughout all agencies- corrections, attorneys, dispatch, troopers, and core commissioners.
The Higher Education Appropriations subcommittee budget prioritizes degree-granting performance funding and initiative programs. The subcommittee chairs put together the requests to promote access to higher education in Utah further.
The Infrastructure and General Government Appropriations subcommittee budget prioritize items funded during the 2020 Legislative Session and then defunded during the Special Sessions. Priority requests focus on providing funding to agencies that saw their budgets reduced. The number one priority request is for funding an upgrade to FINET, the statewide finance system. One-time funding requests include a new Public Safety building in Brigham City.
The Natural Resources, Agriculture, and Environmental Quality subcommittee budget prioritizes funding to meet the demand for an increase in outdoor recreation. The goal of the subcommittee is to improve the visitor experience and increase opportunities for outdoor recreation. The budget requests also take into consideration the potential for a high wildfire season.
The Public Education Appropriation subcommittee budget prioritizes an additional FTE for the Utah State Board of Education (USBE) and money for targeted positions.
The Social Services Appropriation subcommittee budget prioritizes employee compensation. Throughout the 2021 Legislative Session, the committee found a common theme of high turnover contributed to low compensation. Representative Ward, the committee vice-chair, explained agencies are “struggling to pay [workers] enough,” and it has reached a point where employees are not “willing to work for [the state].”