Late last week, the Legislature passed a dozen late-session bills amending the 2023-24 budget package, closing out legislative action on the state budget this year.
So, what can we expect heading into 2024? And how can advocates prepare themselves for the next round of budget and policy debates that will kick off in the new year?
- Establish or renew relationships with staffers. With the Legislature on hiatus for a few months, fall is an ideal time for advocates to schedule meetings with legislative or executive branch staff in order to catch up and share their emerging 2024 policy priorities. In addition, staff turnover typically picks up speed during the fall, creating opportunities to establish relationships with new staff in and around the Capitol as the new year approaches.
- Reach out to the governor’s staff with policy ideas for the 2024-25 state budget, which is being prepared right now. The governor’s administration spends months developing a proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year starting July 1. Advocates still have time to meet with executive branch staff and make the case for including their policy priorities in the governor’s proposed spending plan, which must be released on or before January 10.
- Watch for more changes to the 2023-24 budget in early 2024. It’s common for state leaders to amend the budget in the middle of the fiscal year, revising spending levels up or down and passing new budget-related trailer bills to respond to emerging needs and priorities. With the state facing an uncertain revenue situation and the governor projecting multi-year deficits, additional changes to the current state budget are likely in early 2024.
Advocates can get ready for the next round of state budget deliberations by checking out these Budget Center resources.