From the office of Gov. Robert Bentley:
MONTGOMERY – Governor Robert Bentley on Thursday announced the state’s ability to repay $70 million to the Education Trust Fund’s Rainy Day Account before the close of Fiscal Year 2014, which ended September 30.
By law, Alabama was required to pay a minimum of $35 million to the debt in Fiscal Year 2014, but Governor Bentley released a conditional appropriation for an additional $35 million, bringing the total amount to $70 million paid back to the Rainy Day Fund this fiscal year.
“I have prioritized Alabama’s commitment to restore the Rainy Day Fund,” Governor Bentley said. “Together with a conservative, Republican majority in the Legislature, and working closely with House and Senate Budget Chairmen, we have made substantial progress in the state’s commitment to repaying the fund, thanks to an improving economy and stronger revenues. This year’s reimbursement is one of three payments we have made since Fiscal Year 2012 and totals more than $344 million.”
“Thanks to fiscally-responsible budgeting practices and the hard work of the men and women across this state, we are paying down hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of debt, living within our means and living up to the commitments made by the state,” Senate Finance and Taxation – Education Budget Chairman Trip Pittman (R-Daphne) said. “I share Governor Bentley’s commitment to keeping our state on sound financial footing for years to come.”
“I am extremely pleased that the State of Alabama has completed another fiscal year in which all education appropriations were fully funded,” House Ways and Means Education Chairman Bill Poole (R-Tuscaloosa) said. “Thanks to Republican’s pro-growth, conservative budgeting principles we have not had a single education budget suffer from debilitating proration, while at the same time repaying the debt owed to the Rainy Day Account.”
The state transferred $437.4 million from the Rainy Day Account to support the Education Trust Fund in the 2009 fiscal year. Last year, $260.3 million was repaid.
The Rainy Day Account is part of the Alabama Trust Fund. Full repayment is required by September 30, 2015.