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THE ESTIMATE OF RESOURCES TO MEET NEW APPROPRIATIONS
I attach hereto and mark as Exhibit "A" of the statistical portion of this budget estimate, the statement prepared for me by the State Comptroller under date of January 3, 1918, of the actual receipts and disbursements of the State (exclusive of bond moneys) for the fiscal year ended September 30, 1915; for the nine months ended June 30, 1916; for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1917, and the estimated receipts and disbursements for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1918, and the estimated resources for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1919.
The liability of the State for appropriations in force as of July 1, 1917 (other than bond account), but including in this figure appropriations passed at the Extraordinary Session of the Legislature as shown by the statement was $76,485,804.75. It further shows that the cash balance in the treasury at that date available for the liquidation of these liabilities was $7,248,108.32. The Comptroller's estimate of revenues and receipts of the State for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1918, is $80,322,119.63. If no appropriations were made by the Legislature of 1918 and none of the appropriations in force on July 1, 1917 (increased by the appropriations of the 1917 Extraordinary Session) lapsed, the condition of the treasury on June 30, 1918, would be as follows:
Total apropriations outstanding for the period, $76,485,804.75; cash balance and estimated revenues, $87,570,227.95 or an excess of resources over liabilities of $11,084,423.20.
The anticipated revenues and receipts for the fiscal year 1918-19 according to the Comptroller's estimate 'are $58,440,766.57, so that the total unencumbered balances and anticipated revenues and resources from which the present Legislature without further anticipated revenues may appropriate is this amount of $58,440,766.57 plus the estimated cash balance of $11,084,423.20, or $69,525,189.77.
The Comptroller neither in his figures for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1918, nor for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1919, makes any estimate of accruals, due to lapsed appropriations, within those periods. An accurate estimate of the amount of these lapses is of course difficult. As stated in by Budget Estimate of last year, the best judgment at hand estimated the accruals through lapsed appropriations for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1917, at $2,000,000. The total of net accruals for this period through lapsed appropriations, in excess of lapsed appropriations revived, as reported by the Comptroller in July, 1917, was $1,797,781.14 or $202,218.86 less than that estimate.
The accruals through lapsed appropriations for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1918, were similarly estimated for the purpose of
my Budget Estimate of last year at $1,250,000. In view of the large increase in the appropriations for the current fiscal year over the appropriations for the year ended June 30, 1917, I am advised that the amount of lapsed appropriations for the current year may reasonably be expected to exceed those of the last fiscal year. I am advised also that it is reasonable to assume that lapsed appropriations for the year ended June 30, 1919, will approximate the level of 1918.
Assuming an estimate of $2,000,000 for lapsed appropriations for each of these years, or $4,000,000 for the two years, the total of treasury resources free for new appropriations for the period beginning with the present legislative session and ending June 30, 1919, would be increased from the figure previously given of $69,525,189.77 to $73,525,189.77.
It is of course always the part of prudence to under-estimate rather than over-estimate resources and revenues upon which appropriations are to be based, because the appropriations when made are a fixed amount, while estimated revenues, being under our plan of State finance so largely from indirect sources, may fall below estimates while other anticipated resources are for various reasons likewise uncertain. The State Comptroller of course takes a conservative position in estimates of this character. It is interesting to note however that the revenues of the State for the year ended June 30, 1917, were substantially in excess of the estimates of the Comptroller made in his statement to me for the Budget Estimate of last year.
The Comptroller's estimate of revenues and receipts for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1917, was $56,528,601.41. The actual revenues and receipts for that year shown by his statement, marked Exhibit “A” of the present Budget Estimate, totaled $61,593,111.04 or an increase over his estimate of $5,064,509.63. His estimate of the cash balance as of July 1, 1917, was $3,530,894.85. The actual balance on that date was $7,248,108.32.
ADDITIONS TO REVENUES OF THE STATE
In my Budget Estimate transmitted to the Legislature, January 3, 1917, I submitted as one of its most serious problems, the increase of State revenue, if possible, from indirect sources. In accordance with that suggestion, the tax law was amended by the last Legislature so as to include a tax of three per cent on the net earnings of manufacturing and mercantile corporations, which will result, according to the Comptroller's estimate, in a net increased revenue to the State of $9,017,276.13 during the current fiscal year.
The motor vehicle tax law also was amended to adjust the tax comparatively with the size of the motor vehicle using the State's highways, which amendment, together with the increase in the taxable number of vehicles, will result in a net increased revenue to the State of $223,810.58 during the current fiscal year.
At the same time adjustments of the liquor tax law, together with the fact that the area of so-called dry territory in the State is steadily increasing, will result, during the current fiscal year, in an estimated decrease, according to the Comptroller's report, of $1,835,228.22.
The total revenues, receipts and expenditures for the present fiscal year and the revenues and resources for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1919, as reported by the State Comptroller, have already been discussed in the preceding section of this document and will be found in tabular form marked Exhibit A of the Estimate.
THE ESTIMATE OF APPROPRIATIONS REQUIRED
In the Tentative Appropriation Act, which I transmitted to your Honorable Body, January second last, I suggested for your consideration, appropriations to a total of $78,458,209.29 as against a total of requested appropriations from all divisions of the State government, amounting to $98,906,888.48.
This recommended appropriation programme is, I believe, adequate to meet all the necessities of the State government for the deficiences in the appropriations for the current fiscal year, and for the general purposes of the fiscal year of 1918-19. It includes immediate provision for the New York Guard, which, under the terms of the Constitution, I established when the National Guard was called out of the State by the Federal Government. It includes also the necessary funds for an additional troop of State Police, which, I believe, is justified both by the record of the organization established last year and by the added present necessities of home defense and protection in time of war.
The total recommended appropriations for purposes of the military service and its allied activities, including the State Police, are $4,989,342.83.
DEFICIENCY ALLOWANCES AND INCREASED APPROPRIATIONS FOR FOOD, FUEL, EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES
Last year's rising war prices required substantial increases both in the annual appropriations for the ensuing year and in deficiency items for the replenishment of current appropriations. This upward trend of prices has continued and has brought a still heavier burden upon the appropriations required of the Legisla
ture of 1918. The following tabulation of appropriations of 1917 and requests now before the Legislature of 1918, approved in the Tentative Appropriation Act, for food, fuel, equipment and supplies for the hospitals, charitable institutions and prisons is a striking illustration of how the cost of State government has increased through this cause alone. The increased appropriations recommended for these four items in the institutions is $3,396,776.58 over what were adequate appropriations at the price levels prevailing during the legislative session of 1917. The figures are:
Hospitals, Charitable Institutions and Prisons
For fiscal year:
Appropriations, 1917-18.. Tentative Act, 1918-19. Increase of Tentative Act over appropriations of 1917 Legislature....
$403,550 00 1,139,200 00
$160,300 00 207,938 60
667,695 00 697,425 00
1,849,800 00 1,103,884 60
Total increase of Tentative Act over appropriations of 1917 for food, fuel, equipment and supplies in institutions, $3,396,776.58.
The State, like the individual housekeeper, is now required to pay a largely increased price for every item purchased. This has increased the appropriations recommended not only for the institutions but for all other department and offices of the State. I believe that the allowances recommended for these classes of expenditure are adequate for existing deficiencies and will be sufficient to meet all the necessities of the next fiscal year if there is not a further general and abnormal advance in prices.
THE PERSONAL SERVICE OF THE STATE
I have submitted in the Tentative Appropriation Act for favorable consideration the allowance of increases in pay for employees in the labor, mechanical and low-paid clerical and technical service of the State receiving $1,200 a year or less where increases were recommended by department heads. For employees now receiving an annual salary between that amount and $3,000, I have carefully considered departmental recommendations and have allowed increases in practically all cases which were justified by departmental heads. For employees receiving $3,000 or more per year, I have refused to consider departmental recommendations for
In the Executive Department, I did not recommend any salary increases this year, but I did not insist that such a rule should govern throughout the State service.
While I appreciate that the higher cost of living affects every income, I believe that the State has the right to call upon those in its employ who are now receiving salaries of $3,000 a year or upwards, to make what sacrifices may be necessary by reducing their expenditures for such luxuries as can be dispensed with in time of war.
APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE LEGISLATURE
Appropriations for legislative purposes for the next fiscal year are set forth in itemized form in the Tentative Appropriation Act for 1918. Appropriations in lump sum form for the current fiscal year were submitted to me by the Legislature of 1917 and vetoed by me because of that fact. The Legislature afterwards passed these appropriations over my veto. The present itemized figures were submitted to me by the Clerks of the Senate and the Assembly. I am pleased to report that the Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Senate and of the Ways and Means Committee of the Assembly decided this year to support me in the position that legislative appropriations should be itemized under the same classifications which have been applied to all other departments of State government.
The necessary expenditures of Joint Legislative Investigating Committees embraced in one item of $50,000 which shall be payable only on the audit of the Comptroller after approval by the Chairman of the Committee, the Speaker of the Assembly and the President of the Senate is the only unsegregated legislative appropriation which I have recommended. In this instance I regarded the restrictions and limitations of its authorization as reasonable restraints upon its expenditure.
The appropriations which previously have been made each year under the title of "Legislative Printing," for printing departmental reports and bulletins have been transferred to and included among the appropriations for the departments which issue these documents. My recommendation for legislative printing this year includes only the items necessary for the purposes of the Legislature itself.
The appropriation act of last year generally failed to appropriate for the printing of departmental reports during the fiscal year ending June 30, 1918. I, therefore, recommend that all necessary appropriations be made immediately available for the printing of the departmental reports which will be made to this Legislature.