Posts tagged: John Rusche
House Speaker Scott Bedke predicts that the upcoming legislative session won’t address a big backlog in maintenance funding for the state’s roads and bridges, in part because he said people in his region don’t seem concerned about the roads. “We don’t have clear consensus on that issue,” Bedke told the Associated Taxpayers of Idaho today.
He also urged caution on state spending, saying, “There’s been modest growth in the economy, there’ll be modest growth in the money available as we set budgets, but there’s no runaways there. There’s not a lot of extra new money.” Bedke suggested that business interests pushing for further tax relief on business personal property consider whether they think the state should give up a different tax break to fund that, like the grocery tax credit. “In this time of allocating scarce resources, I think maybe it’s incumbent upon us to talk about this,” he said. “We can get rid of personal property tax. … We can buy down the income tax rates, if that’s what we want to do. But it comes with hard choices.”
House Minority Leader John Rusche, D-Lewiston, warned that Idaho’s not investing for its future, from low state employee pay that prompts costly turnover to underfunding for schools, infrastructure and more. “I think we’re going to hear a lot about what’s important in the primary elections,” he said. “So I’m not very optimistic we’re going to be addressing any of these issues.”
House Minority Leader John Rusche, D-Lewiston, has penned an op-ed piece panning Idaho's approach to implementing both the new longitudinal data system for schools, ISEE (Idaho System for Educational Excellence), and the earlier troubled implementation of a new Medicaid claims system last summer; Rusche said the ISEE problems remind him of the Medicaid claims system problems.
“Such bungling of major initiatives is likely to continue,” Rusche writes. “We rely on a department team that only sees part of the whole, is often inexperienced in system and process change, and is often comprised of personnel who are intermittent due to turnover. We are hesitant to involve stakeholders and end users appropriately, we purchase services from entities who can’t deliver or whom we can’t properly manage, and we are driven by “budget” limitations rather than by quality and results, and set timelines based on externalities (i.e. federal reporting requirements or fiscal calendars) rather than reality.” Click here to read his full article.