Omnibus Season Begins

March 28, 2023

Last week was notable in that “global targets” were announced. These are agreements between the Governor, Senate and House leadership on how much each committee will be able to spend within their budget jurisdiction. This week, the committee chairs took that outline and provided details - their omnibus bills - a combination of the budget bills the committee heard this session that they plan to advance to a floor vote. The deadline for these omnibus bills to make their way through House Ways and Means and Senate Finance is April 4th. 

The budget framework spends nearly all of the $17.5 billion surplus with the largest amount of new funding going to tax credits and cuts, infrastructure projects, and K-12 education. Other big ticket items include $1.2 billion to spending on housing and $670 for the paid family leave program.

The committee most relevant to EDAM’s priorities - Jobs and Economic Development - has just released their House Omnibus Bill. It unfortunately does not include an increase in the base funding for the Redevelopment, but instead maintains the current funding level at $2.2 million per year. The bill does allow for an additional $2 million to be transferred annually by the DEED Commissioner into the Redevelopment program from the Job Creation Fund, so annual funding for Redevelopment is likely to be $4.2 million per year. We expect the Senate Jobs Omnibus Bill to come out soon and will determine the best advocacy approach based on whether the Redevelopment funding increase is included.

One strategy for keeping the Redevelopment program top of mind for legislators is through the media. To that end, the timing couldn’t be better for EDAM’s president Kati Bachmayer to have her Opinion-Editorial piece published in the Sun This Week. It highlights tried and true economic development programs and encourages legislators to prioritize the Redevelopment Fund. Check it out and share with your networks and elected officials. This will help put pressure on committee leadership to include the Redevelopment funding increase in the final conference committee agreement. 

As stated above, we will continue to monitor how EDAM’s top priorities fare in the Senate Jobs and Economic Development Omnibus bill and throughout the conference committee process. We will let members know when there are helpful opportunities to take action and tell specific lawmakers about the Redevelopment Grant program bill to ensure the increase in funding becomes law.