Delaware faces 184 million dollar revenue drop for FY-2024
DELAWARE – The state of Delaware is facing a drop in revenue according to Delaware Finance Secretary Rick Rick Geisenberger.
He tells us the state is looking at a shortfall of 25 million dollars for 2023 compared to where the state expected to be when Governor Carney unveiled his budget in January.
But he tells us the more significant challenge is the 184 million dollars, or 3% overall shortfall projected for 2024.
“As we’re building our budget and thinking about what sort of reserves we need, not just for this year’s budget but for the following year’s budget, it’s something we need to be cautious about,” Geisenberger said.
He tells us, that the shortfall comes on the back of record revenue in 2022, and that 6 percent of the state’s total budget per year is deposited into a budget stabilization fund, that allows the General Assembly to tap into funds with a simple majority vote.
“those reserves are available to help us bridge this bridge,” he said.
According to Geiseinberger, the drop will mean belt-tightening for the legislature, to be able to continue to fund pay bumps for teachers, and public sector workers as well as housing and environmental funding goals touted by Governor Carney.
“We’re also thinking about fiscal years 25 and 26 so when you’re thinking about passing things that will result in significant what we call ‘door openers in future years, it’s something you need to pause on,” he said.
He says in the coming week the state joint finance committee will be crafting its funding plan, as well as forecasting its final of 6 estimates for the state’s receipts for FY23.
“It may mean a little less money goes into the capital budget or a little less money goes into one type of spending than what they had hoped,” Geisenberger said adding “What we’ll do over the next three weeks, though, is try to make sure that we don’t squeeze out some of the commitments that we’ve otherwise made.”
He tells us it is not the first revenue drop the state has navigated, and says its shows the strength of the state’s finances that the savings are stronger now than when Governor Carney took office in 2017.
“We’re still in good shape as we put together this year’s budget, even though we’re expecting three of 3% decline in revenue growth,” Geisenberger said.