Rhode Island plans to sell $350 million of tax anticipation notes and $50 million of bonds through the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority, under Gov. Donald Carcieri's fiscal 2010 budget proposal.
Though Carcieri's $7.62 billion all-funds expense budget was released late Tuesday, the capital budget, which lists proposed bond issuance, hadn't been released at press time yesterday and it was unclear how much general obligation debt the state might issue under the plan. The Rhode Island budget office did not return phone calls or e-mails yesterday.
The Tans and Turnpike and Bridge Authority debt was included in the governor's budget appropriations bill released Tuesday.
The state has sold $951.6 million of new-money GOs since 1999, according to Thomson Reuters. Last year it sold just $8.5 million of GOs. The projected debt service cost in fiscal 2010 will be $207.5 million, according to budget documents.
Carcieri's budget anticipates using $252 million of federal stimulus funds in the current fiscal year and $529 million in fiscal 2010. He has also proposed phasing out the state's corporate income tax over five years beginning with a drop to 7.5% in fiscal 2010 from the current 9% rate in a move to make the state more business friendly.
"My budget uses the federal stimulus money as it was intended - to preserve and create jobs," Carcieri said in a press release. "It includes tax reform policies that will make Rhode Island more tax friendly, competitive, and will grow our economy."
The cash-strapped state saw its projected revenue for the current fiscal year fall to $3.14 billion, a $233.6 million drop from enacted budget projections. The state's projected revenue in fiscal 2010 will fall to $3.08 billion. Unemployment rose in Rhode Island in January to 10.3% from 10% in December, giving it the third-highest rate in the country after Michigan and South Carolina, according to federal labor statistics.