(WASHINGTON) — In the National Governors Association’s first ever State of the State Address, governors urged lawmakers to act on the federal debt limit and said the delay on the issue has created uncertainty for states as they plan their budgets.
“Our economies are tightly linked to the national economy. And as a result, our states’ prosperity depends, the prosperity of our citizens depend in no small measure on the ability of our public servants in Washington to come to — to come to terms on a path forward,” Gov. Jack Markell, chair of the NGA, said in Washington, D.C., Wednesday. “Some of the uncertainty here and the reality of shrinking federal support hurts both of our economies and our budgets.”
“If the debt limit is not increased soon, there will be disruptions in federal spending; there will be disruptions in capital markets that could greatly impact state operations. And until these issues are resolved, states will not be able to make fully informed financial plans that will address the needs of our citizens,” he said.
“The issue of deficit reduction and the deficit itself, the sequestration, deserves to be front and center, because how Washington deals with those issues will affect — have an immediate, direct effect upon our states and certainly could have grave implications to our states and especially our budget,” Gov. Mary Fallin, vice chair of the NGA, said.
While the governors discussed state initiatives regarding education, jobs and energy, one topic was noticeably missing from the NGA’s agenda this year: gun violence.
In a question and answer session following the address, Markell said the NGA would not issue an official position on gun control because each state differs in its stance. The Delaware governor did note that Vice President Joe Biden has invited all governors to participate in a conference call Wednesday on the topic of gun violence.
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