An information meeting called by Rep. Daniel Ortiz gave House members a chance to hear from the Office of Management and Budget on Thursday. The topic was the supplemental budget, SB 39.
Democratic lawmakers took over most of the seats before Republican lawmakers could get in the room, and when the presentation started, they peppered the director of OMB with questions.
The questions all started with the phrase, “Do you understand…” They were trying to express their displeasure with the supplemental budget request that included a $20 million shift of funds from the Department of Education to the earthquake recovery fund, and they were trying to impress upon Budget Director Donna Arduin that she didn’t understand what an impact a $20 million cut would have to the $1.2 billion education budget.
Finally, the budget director had enough. Arduin said, “Rep. Ortiz, I would appreciate it if you would stop asking if I understand things. It is a little pejorative.”
Later in the hearing, when Ortiz was closing the meeting, he apologized.