(April 2016) The Policy Foundation noted more than a decade ago that state spending growth linked to an economic metric such as the Consumer Price Index would save tax dollars. CPI has increased at an average annual rate of 1.5 percent in the economic expansion that started in 2009.  Yet spending increases at higher percentage rates at five departments in pending Fiscal Session Budget Requests when 2015-16 (Budget) is compared to 2016-17 (Legislative Recommendation).1  These departments are Community Corrections, Corrections, Education, Health, and Human Services.

Community Corrections

2015-16     $106,221,889 (Budget)

2016-17     $120,598,361 (Legislative Recommendation)


2015-16     $421,091,045 (Budget)

2016-17     $437,262,696 (Legislative Recommendation)


2015-16     $2,843,373,241 (Budget)

2016-17     $2,986,263,537 (Legislative Recommendation)


2015-16     $405,104,310 (Budget)

2016-17     $444,661,642 (Legislative Recommendation)

Human Services

2015-16     $8,336, 734,072 (Budget)

2016-17     $9,588,428,032 (Legislative Recommendation)

Linking spending increases to CPI (1.5 percent) at the first four departments would save $157.9 million.

–Greg Kaza

1 http://www.dfa.arkansas.gov/offices/budget/Pages/fiscalSession.aspx