JFAC advances Governor’s recommended rainy-day fund transfers, new reserve funds for fire suppression

Tuesday March 21, 2023

Boise, Idaho – Governor Brad Little commented on the Joint Finance and Appropriations Committee advancing his recommendations today to bolster Idaho’s rainy-day funds and pre-pay the state’s fire suppression fund, both good government actions that position the state to better handle any economic uncertainty.

The recommendations JFAC advanced include $61.7 million for the primary state rainy-day funds. The Governor recommended and JFAC approved bringing the balances of the state’s rainy-day accounts to the legal maximum and gives Idaho a projected rainy-day balance of $1.2 billion to weather any future economic storms.

A Moody’s stress test recently ranked Idaho third in our ability to weather the next recession because of our robust rainy-day funds. In affirming Idaho’s coveted AAA status – the highest a state can achieve – Fitch noted Idaho’s “very strong gap-closing capacity stems from its practice of building up reserves during periods of economic expansion.”

JFAC also advanced the Governor’s recommendation to augment the Fire Suppression Deficiency Fund by $68.7 million to ensure the state has the resources – even in volatile economic times – to fight wildfires that threaten life, property, land, and water.

“We’re proud in Idaho that we run our state budget like any good household would run theirs. ‘Kitchen table economics’ means we pay off debt, save for hard times, and make investments where they count. I appreciate my legislative partners for their commitment, year after year, to showing Washington, D.C., and the rest of the country how to budget responsibly,” Governor Little said.

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