Utah has thinnest slice of budget pie


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  • Just say no
    July 24, 2009 11:28 p.m.

    Like it or not we are part of the US. The "regulatory strings" are likely to be there for all states regardless if we say NO.

    If Utah said NO to federal highway money, I might have to camp out at work rather than using the interstate to get from my day job, then to my farm and then back home.

    Seriously, I think that would put Utah at a severe disadvantage, so much that we might think the current economic situation is mild. ***Until then you are just talking without thinking things all the way through.***

    I would like to limit government expansion just like many others & if we can convince all States to say NO, we might have something. Then we could start working on State and other governments to only be involved in what individuals can't do for themselves.

    Reglardless how strong I feel about limiting government, there is no way my community in Southern Utah can build and maintain a highway up to Salt Lake. We have to work cooperatively with other communities, maybe some in the State, some outside. Maybe we could put up a fence at every County line.

  • Just say no...
    July 23, 2009 11:15 p.m.

    to federal funds. The regulatory stings attached aren't worth it.

  • Don
    July 23, 2009 10:52 p.m.

    Henry, Even California has a balanced budget amendment in their Constitution, but the Democrat legislature just ignores it! So they run a 26.3 billion dollar deficit after raising 12 billion in new taxes in the spring! Now the legislators raid the City and County budgets to supposedly balance their budget! Give Credit where credit is due: The State of Utah has a balanced budget and doesn't have to go to Washington D.C with a hat in hand or a tin cup and beg for billions in phony money printed on a press in Washington that is printing at record rates so we can enjoy record inflation and a more devalued dollar in the future!
    Anonymous, I agree with many of your comments, but it is a statistical fact that Oklahoma has the highest level of Charitable giving in the United States! Lots of experience in this area! Just another Christian state living the golden rule also!
    Fact is that less Federal funds returned to Utah does equal less Federal control and illustrates in a big way how INEFFICIENT WASHINGTON D.C is no matter who is in power there! ROME IS BURNING!

  • Henry
    July 23, 2009 8:25 p.m.

    To those bragging about how we had a "balanced budget AGAIN under Republican leadership" in the state, it's in the UT constitution that the budget has to be balanced, regardless of who's in charge. So much for bragging about that line. Also, as I can predict the next comeback line, this amendment was proposed and ratified under a Democratic administration in UT. Yes, I know it seems impossible, but it's true nevertheless.

  • Anonymous
    July 23, 2009 4:08 p.m.

    Hey, I've got a GREAT idea!
    Why not round everybody up and move out to the desert someplace away from everyone and do our own thing?
    We can multiple wives, scam each other with pyramid schemes, bring back prohibition, pay no taxes ...
    It'll be great!

  • my state
    July 23, 2009 3:27 p.m.

    thanks you for your generousity!! We pay in X, and get back Y. Y is much much bigger than X.

    we are a farming state... not in the south.

    Again, we thank you. kiss kiss

  • Anonymous
    July 23, 2009 2:05 p.m.

    Utah has the most productive workforce in America! This information further supports this. Why are we on the top of states with highest bond ratings. Why do we spend the least amount per student but are in the better half of the states with education results. Another example of the most productive workforces.

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints also sends out much more money from the state of Utah than it brings in here. This probably draws more capital away from Utah than the lack of federal spending in Utah. Yet we have one of the best economic engines of any state. Again, this shows that Utah has the most productive workforce of any state!

    How can we solve the severe economic problems that face the nation today? We will find some great examples by looking at what is done in Utah! Most productive workforce, and most charitable giving in terms of money and service.

    Lets take note of this, we can be productive and make a difference!

  • Federal money equals power
    July 23, 2009 1:43 p.m.

    Sure does!

    From my personal experience if there were two identical wildlife projected except one was in Colorado and the other was in Utah. In many cases the Colorado project would get approved.

    So I guess that means you have to build friendship and work together so "they" will support worthwhile projects in Utah. Maybe we don't have the "best" salesmen hired as project writers, but I detected a general negative feeling towards anything that came from Utah.

    Maybe that is part of why we are last on the list - we are seen as uncooperative etc.

  • Federal money equals power
    July 23, 2009 1:15 p.m.

    The point of the federal budget is not to provide services to Americans in a manner that is most beneficial to the country as a whole. It is to reward those who meet the political goals of our elected officials.

    Utah rarely plays into some politicians political agenda, so we don't get much money, plain and simple.

    The system stinks, but its the system we've got.

  • Anonymous
    July 23, 2009 1:15 p.m.

    I have no special knowledge, but looking at the last paragraph of the story of money spent in individual counties makes me wonder what was included and what wasn't. It lloks to me that something might have been ommitted from the complete story.

    The question of how much is paid in income tax and how much is received is valid and would be a good project for the Deseret News.

    In addition, rather than counting totals we should work to see that what is spent (city, county, state, federal) on the best projects and they are managed properly. What is the proper balance between State Parks & State Roads, Would those federal funds be best spent on airports, improved weather reports, education etc. or what balances between them. Are we spending on things really needed or do some slip through?

  • L
    July 23, 2009 12:57 p.m.

    Some more facts needed.

    I had understood (a few years back) that Utah actually received more federal money than was paid in income tax even though as the article says we are near the lower end of the total amount received. When cost sharing projects (like highways) grants, military bases, payments-in-lieu of taxes, salaries of federal employees in National Parks to the IRS Service Center, contracts, fire fighting. post offices all add up.

    I know in the '60's there was a study in one county about how it would be if all the National Forest Land were converted to private land and taxed at rates to similar properties. The study assumed that local government would provide similar services [like fire protection, roads etc.] a similar costs. The conclusion was the County would have to raise taxes just to keep going and if something like one of the big fires happened, it would use the County's whole budget to manage it.

    Yes we pay taxes, but there are not many of us (conntrary to what it might seem in SL traffic) and we do receive and benefit from federal money that comes in the State.

  • Micawber
    July 23, 2009 12:44 p.m.

    I guess the new NSA facility will change those numbers some.

  • Take off the ideological goggles
    July 23, 2009 11:26 a.m.

    The knowledgeable people quoted in the article point out correctly that the reason for Utah "ranking" near last in this measure is Social Security and Medicare, which Utah gets relatively little of because of the small population of elderly.

    Unfortunately, the reporter seems to have ignored this point in favor of the more sensationalistic line about Utah not getting its due.

    (And sure enough, the loonies took the bait and posted their nonsense here...)

  • EFL
    July 23, 2009 10:47 a.m.

    This article seemed to be missing one very critical element: what is the revenue generated (i.e. federal taxes collected) per capita in Utah? Without knowing this number it is impossible to know if Utah "got less than it's share" as several posters stated. These posters likely erroneously assumed that each state pays equal amounts into the system per capita, this is clearly not the case.

    My guess is Utah contributes less than the national average in federal taxes; the younger demographic profile and charitable contribution deductions of many residents likely contribute to this. My guess, however, is that Utah still pays more into the federal system than it receives. Rankings of this spread would be very interesting to see.

    I'm not making a statement about liberal v. conservative politics here. Just pointing out a weakness in the article and the logical flaws in several of the posted comments above.

  • This is how dems
    July 23, 2009 9:47 a.m.

    government works, reward the irresponsible and punish the responsible. Makes complete sence. See Socialized gov is the way to go???

    Darnd right just cause we get less than everyone else, we will still equally pay back the debt or have equal share of debt, oh, Obama has no intention of ever paying off the debt he has made us incurre.

  • xscribe
    July 23, 2009 9:41 a.m.

    All of you who are bragging about not taking from the federal government are funny to hear. You take your share, but your share seems to be lower, according to the article, because your kids are having kids, hence the article referring to the "young age" of Utahns. Posters talk about being fiscally responsible, but it sounds as if Utah would be right in there asking for their share given different circumstances, so read the article again and hop off that high horse.

  • Sam Fidler
    July 23, 2009 9:35 a.m.

    Anonymous @ 8:31

    Conservatives here are not the ones missing the point. We just prefer to not be enslaved by the government dole and refuse to get caught up in a juvenile game of "no fair" that only bankrupts our nation.

  • Clare
    July 23, 2009 9:20 a.m.

    Dear Anonymous,

    I hope my tax dollars go to paying off our national debt. I don't mind paying a little extra to help with the national good. As a school teacher, I'd like to see more money for my students and myself, but I'm proud that Utah has a balanced budget.

  • Anonymous
    July 23, 2009 9:02 a.m.

    To LDS Help, the Church does not pay for every need a family may have. Great things are done, but they cannot meet all the need. The Church just is not big enough even for its own members, let alone the 97% of America that does not belong.

  • SJ
    July 23, 2009 8:48 a.m.

    If all other states started acting more fiscally responsible, they would not need as much money from the federal gov't and the fed can then put that money toward balancing the budget and paying down our deficit.

  • hebwew randel
    July 23, 2009 8:41 a.m.

    in utah fed spending appears to operate within it's proper realm - roads, airports, defense, parks - the people appear to operate within their proper realms - family, fidelity, health, low poeverty, education - Americans should learn from UTAH'S example of WE THE PEOPLE

  • Anonymous
    July 23, 2009 8:31 a.m.

    Maybe you're missing the point of this article.
    Did you, or did you not pay any Federal Taxes?

    What the report is clearly stating [and you are obviously missing] is that Utahns are paying MORE than they are getting back.

    So just keep on giving yourselves a big old slap on the back. I'm sure all those unemployed folks in places like Mississippi, Alabama and Kentucky will be sending us here in Utah all a bunch of "Thank you" cards!

  • Welfare Sucks
    July 23, 2009 8:24 a.m.

    The dribble from the government teat soon becomes a firehose. Best stay away.

  • Utah Breath of Fresh air.
    July 23, 2009 8:20 a.m.

    way to go Utah!! I'm willing to bet that most conservative voting states are near the bottom of the list, while most liberal voting states are right at the top beginning with New York and California, which is very unfortunate considering the budget mess that both states are facing.

    However, its always been the mantra of the left to throw our good money after bad.

  • 8 yrs. of tyranny?
    July 23, 2009 8:14 a.m.

    Under Obama's socialist's America, I will soon have no choice on Healthcare, Energy, the car I drive, education, less disposal income..... I never felt so free!

    You idiot liberals still complaining about Bush and is "assault" on the constitution are deluded. Obama is doing what you blamed Bush for the last 8 years.

  • Anonymous
    July 23, 2009 8:14 a.m.

    You want less federal dollars, yet you fight to keep Hill AFB and Tooele Army Depot from BRAC, you love federal dollars on the reconstruction of I-15, you are proud of SL International Airport, paid for by federal dollars, and the list goes on and on. Then when the Administration (and the military) wants to cut the F-22, which is a pork-laden project, you scream like crazy. You preach states rights, then support a gun bill that takes away states rights. You want a national law defining marriage, overruling state laws. The reality is, you conservatives LOVE federal money and intervention, when it is on your pet projects. Clowns!

  • LDS Help
    July 23, 2009 8:10 a.m.

    The LDS church also provides vast food and shelter resources for its members and non-members alike, taking the place of federal food and housing assistance.

    The amount of money the LDS church places into it Bishop store houses, utility and rent payments is massive.

  • Anonymous
    July 23, 2009 8:01 a.m.

    Let's keep it this way. Can we keep all the federal money out of the state, and all the federal demands and coercions that go along with all that money? I'm for independence from the federal government. And I quite dislike the, "Well, look how much everybody else is getting," silliness. This isn't Christmas morning, this is real life. I think we're getting along just fine without more federal intrusion.

  • Invisible Hand
    July 23, 2009 7:48 a.m.

    We need to elect more Democrats so we can get our rightfull place at the trough. After all, bringing home the pork is much more important than silly notions like the good of the country.

  • Re: Anon
    July 23, 2009 7:42 a.m.

    While you use this as an opportunity to put a feather in your liberal hat I look at it completely different. I DONT WANT FEDERAL MONEY!!! You can have it bleeding heart. Look at other states ran by liberals, check out their "state" deficits?? What do you see? Deficit, deficit, deficit! Is this a surprise that Utah balanced the budget AGAIN with Republican leadership.

    You look at the worst run states economically and 12 out of 13 are run by tax loving Democrats. While Bush could be viewed as a failure on the federal level UTAH has proven it doesnt need Obama or Bush to run its state.

    Utah has always done more with less and this recent study just proves it. You can have your grants, entitlements, blocks of cheese, whatever you can rip off from the Feds, go ahead. Meanwhile Utah will keep running with low unemployment and an economy that puts the majority of the nation to shame.


  • Craig
    July 23, 2009 7:37 a.m.

    We are not getting enough money from the Feds for all the land they own in this state. They need to give it back to the state so we can generate taxes and develop parts of it.

  • DH
    July 23, 2009 7:27 a.m.

    I would rather not be a big drain on the federal government. This is something to be thrilled about. We are caring for ourselves versus relying on "Big Brother" to care for us. Congratulations to the state. The only sad thing is that we don't also pay less for being more thrifty.

  • david jay
    July 23, 2009 7:20 a.m.

    I knew there would be one idiot at least here. I don't know if the loser is Bush, Hatch, Bennett, Matheson, Bishop or who. But you all voted for them during the period in question(2007,2008), so one or more of them must be the loser. Interesting in the list of counties and amounts that Tooele wasn't listed. With three military facilities I would think it would have a high amount of federal money.

  • rusby
    July 23, 2009 7:15 a.m.

    That is wonderful news. Lets see if we can push it even lower in the future. Less money from the government = more freedom for us.

  • Anonymous
    July 23, 2009 7:08 a.m.

    You can rationalize the reasons all you like (younger, married, etc.) but that does not explain procurement and grant deficiencies and similar economic activity. The reality is, as I've argued for a long time, that Utah is a non-player. The Congressional delegation is relatively weak and reliably of one party (even Matheson seems to be a closet Republican and a non-player). Utah will vote Republican no matter what (my Dad said Utah would elect the Devil himself if he ran on the Republican ticket), so neither party has to do anything to build support. So, enjoy paying taxes and getting less in return, missing out on the economic benefit. Claiming that Utah doesn't want federal dollars does not change reality.

  • Anonymous
    July 23, 2009 3:08 a.m.

    Utah also had the lowest voting rate along with Hawaii so you have yourselves to blame. Obama brought hope to the USA after 8 years of tyranny

  • Brian
    July 23, 2009 1:58 a.m.

    You all voted for the loser...now you have to pay for your sins!

  • Linda
    July 22, 2009 10:27 p.m.

    Way to go Utah! Your state is an example to the rest of America! I wish we could all emuluate your lifestyle more!