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Pennsylvania House of Representatives
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=H&SPick=20170&cosponId=24930
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House Co-Sponsorship Memoranda

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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: December 12, 2017 06:04 PM
From: Representative Seth M. Grove
To: All House members
Subject: Joint Revenue Estimate Forecasting Committee
 
While the General Appropriations Bill may be the most important piece of legislation passed by the General Assembly, the Commonwealth still struggles to accurately predict future state revenue. A pertinent example of this fact comes from the debate around expanding gaming to include small games of chance. During the debate, it was estimated the proposal would generate $100 million in revenue, but instead realized less than $10 million.

Another example comes from the 2016 fiscal year budget as no legislative analysis or fiscal analysis from the administration anticipated the $1.5 billion difference between estimated state revenue and actual state revenue. Although forecasting economic revenue is not always an exact science, it is clear the state must do a better job accurately estimating future revenues in order to plan the following year’s budget.

To improve the state’s economic forecasting, I am introducing legislation establishing a Joint Revenue Forecasting Committee. The Committee shall consist of the following members:
  • Secretary of Revenue
  • Secretary of the Budget
  • The Majority Appropriations Chairs of the Senate and House
  • The Minority Appropriations Chairs of the Senate and House
  • One Member of the public appointed by the Governor
  • One Member of the public appointed by the President Pro-Tempore of the Senate
  • One Member of the public appointed by the Speaker of the House
  • One Member of the public appointed by the Minority Leader of the Senate
  • One member of the public appointed by the Minority Leader of the House
  • The Director of the Independent Fiscal Office who will serve as an ex-officio member
The Committee will be staffed by the Department of Revenue and is charged with forming a joint estimate for the Commonwealth’s General Fund by December 16th and May 15th of every year. The estimate must be approved by 11 members to ensure a nonpartisan estimate is approved by the Committee. Should the Committee fail to have 11 members approve of the revenue estimate, the Governor and General Assembly shall use a revenue estimate provided by the Independent Fiscal Office. The committee may revise an official estimate under the same process requiring an 11 vote majority.

Should the estimate approved by the committee have an error rate of three percent or more between estimated revenues and collected revenues, the committee shall develop a new model for forecasting revenue collections.

Please join me and co-sponsor this legislation to improve our revenue estimates upon which we base our budget. Should you have any questions please contact Jordan Grant at jgrant@pahousegop.com

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Introduced as HB2013