Identical Arizona House and Senate budget bills were adopted late last week by the Joint Budget Committee, paving the way for a final vote on the $4.93 billion spending plan for fiscal 2014.

Projected revenue for fiscal 2014, which begins July 1, should be sufficient to fund the top two spending priorities, Category A’s $4.92 billion and the $131 million in Category B.

The House passed a package of tax bills on Friday that will reduce revenues by $10 million in fiscal 2014, $84 million in 2015, and $140 million in fiscal 2016. The $10 million reduction next year is reflected in the budget bill. General fund spending in fiscal 2013 totals $4.7 billion.

State aid to local school district will total $2 billion, with $1.23 billion going to the Department of Human Services. Total spending on the Medicaid program of $890 million is an increase of $85 million from fiscal 2013.

State employees will receive a 2% cost-of-living wage increase for the first time in three years. Higher education’s budget allocation of $736 million is an increase of $7 million.      

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