Governor Cox’s Big Blue State Budget: Get Out Your Wallet

Governor Cox released his proposed budget for the upcoming year, and it’s yet another blowout, blue-state budget.

For context, from the first quarter of 2021, when Governor Cox took office, through the 1st quarter of 2023, Utah’s state GDP went from $237 billion to $251 billion; a growth rate of just under 2%. (source Bureau of Economic Analysis)

Today, Governor Cox announced a state budget proposal for the next fiscal year of over $29.5 billion. Our state budget in 2021 was $21.7 billion. That is a growth rate of 11%. (Source Utah Audited Comprehensive Financial Reports and Governor Cox’s Budget just released)

For the same time period, our population has grown at less than 1% growth rate, while inflation was around 3.7%.

Since GDP growth includes government spending, 84% of our GDP growth came from the growth in government spending. No matter how you slice it, Utahns are paying a significantly greater portion of their income for State Government, even while their income, which grew at .8%, is not even close to keeping up with inflation.

Here’s the thing. You can feel it. Without even crunching the numbers, you know that your income is not keeping pace with inflation let alone enough to pay more state taxes. And this doesn’t even take into account property taxes, federal taxes, utility costs, and other fees. I just saw one business whose city business license went from $564 to $5,552. Another business that finally sold to a Tribal entity because their property taxes had gone up 1,500% with no increase in services. (Tribes don’t pay property taxes, so the taxing entities that had a windfall one year, now get nothing from this business.)

Honestly, this email is not simply to criticize, but to validate you and to emphasize the need for a serious change in course.

Which explains a lot…

The only thing Growing in Utah is our government – – and the cost of living.

  • Utahns can’t afford homes. (Don’t worry, Governor Cox is planning to build more homeless shelters).
  • Utahns can’t afford stubbornly high grocery bills.
  • Utahns can’t afford persistent high gas prices.
  • Utahns can’t afford another huge annual spike in healthcare premiums.

Yet somehow, Governor Cox thinks Utahns can afford another billion dollars worth of government.

I’m not hearing from any Utahns that they have room in their family budgets and business balance sheets for more government – especially not $1 billion dollars of more government. Everyone is squeezed to the limit, but the Cox administration is convinced that they can squeeze a little a lot more.

This is a blue state mindset being used to justify a socialist expansion of our state government. It’s time for a change. It’s time for Better Roads Ahead.

I’m not surprised to see this blowout blue-state budget being proposed in an election year. The budget priorities do seem to align nicely with the list of Governor Cox’s biggest campaign donors. With an extra $1 billion in taxpayer dollars for Governor Cox to dole out, the only way to beat Big Money Politics is with Big Grassroots. Help me hit my goal of finding 20 new grassroots donors a day.

Help me hit my goal >>>

Thanks so much!

Phil Lyman