Published Online: January 19, 2005
Published in Print: January 19, 2005, as Vermont

State of the States

Vermont

More Specifics to Come Douglas Budget Plan

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Gov. James H. Douglas of Vermont gave education a nod but not much more in his Jan. 6 inaugural address.

Mr. Douglas, a Republican who was elected to a second two-year term in November, highlighted a need to slow spending and head off a deficit that he said could expand, if left unchecked, to a quarter of the state’s general fund in two years.

Gov. James H. Douglas

“I challenge the legislature to deliver to me a fiscally responsible, balanced budget that does not raise the tax burden on the people of the state,” he said.

He also appealed to the legislature, both of whose chambers are dominated by Democrats, to endorse a package of health-care-reform bills he is proposing this year.

As for education, the governor said he wanted to see “an even greater emphasis on skills training” so that every Vermonter can compete and succeed economically, though he offered no specifics.

At the same time, he pledged support for the goals of improving schools, closing student achievement gaps and fostering innovation in schools.

Gov. Douglas will submit a budget proposal to the legislature later this month.

Vol. 24, Issue 19, Page 19

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