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STATE BUDGETS

State Budget Update February 22, 2012

February 22, 2012

Updates this week:

  • CONNECTICUT: Governor Malloy budget is drawing fire for using gimmicks. A $700 million bond sale was used to fix roads and build schools, but also provided a $65 million payment to balance the budget, with high interest. WSJ.com.
  • ILLINOIS: Governor Quinn to cut budget back to 2008 levels, requiring each state departments to make 9 percent cuts. However, the education budget it larger than last year. SJ-R.com.
  • TEXAS: Texas budget shortfall continues as Medicaid and social programs drain the budget. The state is short more than $4.1 billion. WTAW.com

State Budget Deficit Updates

States' Running Deficits

California:$21 billion budget deficit. Sunshinestatenews.com, January 13, 2012.

Colorado: $500 million shortfall. Chronicle, September 20, 2011.

Connecticut:$144.5 million deficit. Courant.com, January 25,2012.

Florida: $2 billion shortfall for the next fiscal year. Sunshine State News, October 7, 2011.

Illinois: $8 billionChicago Tribune, September 26, 2011.

Louisiana: $251 million deficit in current budget. Bayoubuxx.com. December 17, 2011.

Maine: $220 millionKjonline.com. January 16, 2012.

Maryland: $1 billion shortfall for fiscal year 2012-13. Baltimoresun.com. January 3, 2012

Massachusetts: $1 billion deficit for the next fiscal year.Masslive.com. December 12, 2011.

Michigan: $1.2 billion surplus in FY 2011. Detroitnews.com. January 12, 2012.

Mississippi: $1 billion shortfall for fiscal year 2012-13.  Clarionledger.com. January 3, 2012.

Missouri: $750 million deficit projected for fiscal year 2012. Missourinet.com. December 16, 2011.

Montana: $426 million surplus projected. Businessweek.com. December 6,2011.

New York: $350 million deficit this year (fiscal 2012) and  $3.5 billion deficit in fiscal 2013.BusinessWeek. November 18, 2011.

Oregon: $300 million shortfall. NWCN.com, January 25, 2012

Pennsylvania: $500 million shortfall projected for the current year. Post-gazette.com. December 20, 2011.

Rhode Island: $120 million budget shortfallBoston.com. January 4, 2012.

Vermont: $46 million budget shortfallVTdigger.org. January 4, 2012.

Virginia: Senate budget committee estimates up to a billion dollars shortfall for FY 2012-14 while the House Appropriations Committee estimates a $1.5 billion shortfall. Washington Post. December 15, 2011.

Washington: $500 million. Seattletimes.com. February 17, 2012. 

Wyoming: $437 million surplus forecasted as of June 30, 2012. Powell Tribune, September 27, 2011.

Information by State:

Alabama

  • Legislators will likely need to find a way to cut $400 million from the state's general fund, as federal stimulus money and other one-time revenue sources are running out. Dothaneagle.com. February 5, 2012.
  • A $1.8 billon General Fund budget approved by the Alabama Senate will require most agencies, except prisons and Medicaid, to get by on less money and will wipe out funding for many museums and tourist attractions. The budget provides no raises for state workers and is based on them paying more for retirement and health insurance. Forbes.com. April 8, 2011. 

Alaska

Legislature passes $9 billion total budget including about $7 billion in state funds. The compromise put more money to pay for college scholarships for high-achieving high school graduates. The final bill contained $6 million for Parnell's plan and $3 million for needs-based assistance. Alaska Dispatch. May 4, 2011.

Arizona

  • Governor Brewer proposes that the state buy back state buildings sold when money was tight. Foxnews.com. January 14, 2012.
  • Governor signed budget that eliminates state budget shortfall. Spending in the next fiscal would total $8.3 billion. That's below the current year's $8.5 billion and Brewer's proposed $8.9 billion. The changes would save the state a projected $500 million to help close a $1.1 billion budget shortfall. Arizona Republic. April 8, 2011.

Arkansas

The Arkansas House gave final approval Friday to a $4.6 billion budget for the coming year that increases spending for public schools and prisons but keeps state workers' salaries flat. On a 74-13 vote, the House gave final approval to the Revenue Stabilization Act, which sets spending priorities for the coming year based on expected revenues. Arkansas online. April 2, 2011. 

California

  • S&P raises state's credit rating from "stable" to "positive." WSJ.com. February 14, 2012.
  • California must come up with $3.3 billion by March. Treasurer Bill Lockyer plans to borrow as much as $1 billion from Wall Street, and Gov. Brown intends to sign the legislation. Controller Chiang will delay making $1 billion in scheduled payments to public colleges, counts, and health programs for the poor. The CA Public Employees' Retirement System agreed to allow the state to delay making a $527 million payment to cover benefits. Businessweek.com. February 3, 2012.
  • State Controller John Chiang says state needs to borrow more money and delay some payments to plug state budget shortfall. Chiang says state leaders must find $3.3 billion to cover payments for priority programs between Feb. 29 & April 13. Bellinghamherald.com. January 31, 2012.
  • State Comptroller John Chiang reports that state has $21 billion deficit. December report shows that California revenue is down by 11.2% due mostly to 26.4% decrease in sales tax collection and because state spending ($52.3 billion) is 33% more than revenue. Sunshinestatenews.com. January 13, 2012. 
  • Governor Brown sends "ransom note" to California voters on tax increases. His proposal increases state spending by 7 percent over the current budget, even though the state faces a $9.2 billion deficit. Governor Brown's budget calls for $4.8 billion in cuts to public schools if voters reject the $7 billion in tax increases Brown wants to place on the November ballot. Additionally on Brown's chopping block is a $1 billion welfare cut. Bloomberg.com. January 6, 2012.
  • Governor Brown wins right to use more than $1 billion in redevelopment funds to help fill a budgetgap. Businessweek.com. December 30, 2011.
  • Judge stops Medi-Cal budget cuts; state plans appeal. Californiawatch.org. January 4, 2012.

Colorado

  • Denver court decision in education says Colorado is underfunding schools by billions. Denverpost.com.December 9, 2011.
  • Colorado lawmakers will likely have to cut another $400 million to $500 million next year as the state continues trying to dig out of the economic downturn, the governor's economic team said on September 20. Chron.com. September 20, 2011.
  • Governor Hickenlooper signed the budget compromise bill on May 6 to help cover a $1 billion state budget shortfall. Colorado.gov. May 6, 2011.

Connecticut

  • Governor Malloy budget is drawing fire for using gimmicks. A $700 million bond sale was used to fix roads and build schools, but also provided a $65 million payment to balance the budget, with high interest. WSJ.com. February 21, 2012.
  • In two months, CT went from a $101 million surplus to a $144.5 million deficit due to excessive spending and less than project revenue. Courant.com. January 25, 2012.
  • Governor Malloy plans to use budget-cutting authority to trim programs across state government and impose new restrictions on hiring to help cover a projected $73.6M deficit in 2012 budget. Courant.com. January 24, 2012.
  • Moody's downgrades state bonds citing the state's high debt, racked up by substantial borrowing and depletion of the rainy day fund, used to cover deficits resulting from the recession that limited the state's tax collections. Courant.com. January 20, 2012.
  • Twenty-two State Troopers are expected to lose their jobs. Governor Malloy announced $135 million budget cuts to help balance the two-year budget. Blogs.courant.com. September 6, 2011.
  • Unions overwhelmingly ratify concession packageto balance state budget. Registercitizen.com. August 18, 2011.

Delaware

  • Gov. Jack Markells' $3.45 billion operating budget proposal includes additional spending for Medicaid and schools, but no tax or fee increases. The budget represents a 1% increase over this year's operating budget. CBSnews.com, January 27, 2012.

Florida

Georgia

Hawaii

  • State plans to tighten spending rather than increase taxes to cover a predicted $19.3 million state budget deficit in 2013. Therepublic.com. January 9, 2012.
  • Moody's downgrades Hawaii's General Obligation Bond Rating. Hawaii Reporter. May 17, 2011.

Idaho

  • Governor calls for $45 million in tax cuts. Spokesman.com. January 10, 2012.
  • Governor raises the budget by over 5 percent. Idahomountainexpress.com. January 10, 2012.
  • The Joint Finance- Appropriation Committee adopted the ending balance projected to be $39.4 million ($10.6 million lower than the Governor's recommended ending balance). The 2011 session included new legislation that provides for transfers from dedicated accounts to the General Fund to help balance FY 2012. The Legislature provided for an overall 2.2 % omnibus General Fund reduction for all agencies and departments. The 2011 Idaho Legislature.

Illinois

  • Governor Quinn to cut budget back to 2008 levels, requiring each state departments to make 9 percent cuts. However, the education budget it larger than last year. SJ-R.com. February 20, 2012.
  • Governor wants $2 billion in Medicaid cuts. ChicagoSunTimes.com. February 7, 2012. Governor also calls for more spending; legislators wonder where he plans to get the money. Chicagotribune.com. February 2, 2012.
  • IL facing financial disaster under pile of unpaid bills that could reach $35 billion in five years if state fails to reign in pension and other costs, according to the Civic Foundation. Chicagotribune.com. January 30, 2012.
  • In FY 2012, Medicaid and pension spending is equivalent to 60 percent of the state's base operating budget; by 2017, it increases to 73 percent. Chicagomag.com. January 30, 2012.
  • Budget crisis overshadows all other items for Illinois legislature. Whig.com. January 28, 2012.
  • Lawmakers reject Governor's plans to close seven state facilities to save money. Businessweek.com. November 10, 2011.
  • Budget deficit hits $8.3 billion despite tax increase. Bloomberg Businessweek.org. September 26, 2011.
  • Governor Quinn confirms he will lay off government workers despite his agreement with labor unions not to do so. ABClocal.go.com. September 6, 2011.

Indiana

  • State officials find $300 million in revenue.TheRepublic.com. April 30, 2011.

Iowa

  • State auditor says Governor's budget doesn't cover pay increases for state employees or close the $5.7 billion pension shortfall. CBSnews.com. February 6, 2012.
  • Governor proposes budget that increases spending 3.8 percent. Iowapolitics.com. January 10, 2012.
  • The Iowa Legislature beat a midnight deadline with hours to spare on Thursday, finishing work on a $5.99 billion state budget and resolving a dispute over taxpayer money that could be used to pay for some Medicaid abortions. DesMoinesRegister.com. June 30, 2011.

Kansas

  • Governor proposes tightening state budget by 4.1% lower than last year. Nebraska.tv. January 12, 2012.
  • Sharp cuts taking place in Kansas. TheWashingtonPost.com. December 21, 2011.

Kentucky

Louisiana

  • Governor Jindal plans to close a $900 million shortfall by cutting nearly 6,400 state jobs, overhauling the state pension system, and privatizing some prisons and health centers. Nola.com. February 9, 2012.
  • The $895M shortfall projected in 2012 isn't a surprise: At least 40% of the gap is tied to the use of one-time money used for state Medicaid that propped up parts of the current budget and will expire before the start of the fiscal year in July. CBSnews.com. January 24, 2012.

Maine

  • House gave preliminary approval to Medicaid cuts intended to help close a $120 million shortfall. CBSnews.com. February 14, 2012.
  • Governor says bipartisan budget balancing plan is "full of gimmicks" and lacks the structural changes needed to make state Medicaid services affordable to taxpayers. Therepublic.com. February 6, 2012.
  • $220 million. Kjonline.com. January 16, 2012.
  • Governor orders state agencies to find $100 million in cuts in anticipation of losing federal funds due to the deficit reduction plan recently passed by Congress. BangorDailyNews.com. August 4, 2011.

Maryland

  • Governor proposes tax, fees, and rates increases totaling nearly $1 billion to balance the sate budget, all while increasing spending on transportation and environmental projects. Washingtonpost.com. February 4, 2012.
  • Governor O'Malley proposes increasing sales tax from 6% to 7%. Washingtontimes.com. January 11, 2012.
  • Gov. also proposes raising taxes on Maryland's high earners. Washingtonpost.com. January 17, 2012.
  • $1 billion shortfall for fiscal year 2012-13. Baltimoresun.com. January 3, 2012.
  • The Senate Budget and Taxation Committee met with the Department of Legislative Services to address viable options to raise revenue to help to close an estimated $800 million transportation budget shortfall. Options discussed include raising the state's fuel tax rates, adding a 6 percent sales tax on fuel purchases, or increasing other taxes and fees. Landlinemag.com. September 16, 2011.

Massachusetts

  • Gov. Patrick unveils $32.3 billion state budget that increases state spending by approx. 3 %. CBSlocal.com. January 25, 2012.
  • Governor Patrick's top budget official said the Governor will offer "modest and limited new revenue proposals" for next year's budget. Boston.com. January 13, 2012.
  • Chairman of Senate Ways & Means Committee predicts $1 billion deficit in FY 2013. Masslive.com. December, 2011.

Michigan

  • Governor Rick Snyder released his $48.2 billion budget designed to continue the fiscal overhaul he began last year. Detroitnews.com. February 9, 2012.
  • $1.2 billion surplus in FY 2011. Detroitnews.com. January 12, 2012. 
  • Funding model rewards higher education institutions.
  • Detroit prison to close and 2,000 face layoffs to fill state budget shortfall. DetroitFreePress.com. September 29, 2011.

Minnesota

  • State asks consultants to ferret out savings. Startribune.com.December 12, 2011.
  • $876 budget surplus projected for the current biennium that ends June 30, 2013, but $1.3 billion deficit projected for next biennium.Lakeville.patch.com. December 2, 2011.
  • Finalizes sale of $757 million in tobacco bonds - a move that comes with substantial costs. Duluthnewstribune.com. November 17, 2011.
  • Lawmakers okay changes that could drop 65,000 from Medicaid. JSonline.com. November 10, 2011.
  • Moody's lowers Minnesota outlookto negative on strained finances. Online.wsj.com. August 1, 2011.

Mississippi

  • House votes to alter budget process. Lawmakers adding money to a program must cut the same amount from another program. Clarionledger.com. February 13, 2012.
  • Governor Bryant's first budget proposal recommends $26 million less in state spending by cutting departments and agencies by 5.5%, but fully funding education. Commercialappeal.com. February 1, 2012.
  • New Governor Bryant plans to restructure state budget process to performance-based budgeting. Commercialappeal.com. January 11, 2012.
  • State facing $1 billion state budget shortfall in next budget clarionledger.com. January 3, 2012.

Missouri

  • Gov. Nixon proposes a half billion in state budget cuts to balance the FY2013 budget without a tax increase. Linncountyleader.com. January 24, 2012.
  • Higher education fund may be raided again. ColumbianMissourian.com. December 26, 2011.

Montana

  • State expected to have $427 million surplus by mid-2013. TheRepublic.com. April 30, 2011.

Nebraska

Lawmakers approved a two-year spending plan that cuts state agency budgets but leaves nearly $300 million in Nebraska's cash reserve without raising taxes. The package would set general fund spending at roughly $7 billion over the two-year budget period that begins July 1. The package closes a budget gap projected at nearly $1 billion. Changes to school funding accounted for $410 million in savings spread over the next two fiscal years. The proposal would pull $105 million from the state's cash reserve to balance the budget, but leave $299 million. BusinessWeek. May 12, 2011.

Nevada

Gov. Brian Sandoval and legislative leadership reached a budget deal to extend the so-called sunset taxes, called that because they were meant to sunset in 2011, to help fill the state's $2 billion state budget shortfall for the next two-years. The deal also eliminates part of the modified business tax, which was one of the sunset taxes. In this deal, the taxes and fee changes will stay in place until July 1, 2013. It is expected to bring $620 million to the state. August 1, 2011.

New Hampshire

New Jersey

  • Gov. Christie proposes $32.1 billion budget, increasing spending by 8.2 percent by relying on optimistic revenue projections and reserving less than 1 percent. Christie dedicated $1.07 billion to the pension fund, 70 percent less than the annual contribution requirement. App.com. February 21, 2012.
  • Citing the state's failure to make full pension payments and its sluggish economic recovery, Fitch Ratings downgraded New Jersey's bond rating a notch, ranking it among the lowest in the nation. The move could make it more costly for the state to borrow. Nj.com. August 18, 2011.
  • Gov. Christie vetoed $900 million from the $29.7 billion budget including vetoing Democrats efforts to restore funding to public assistance programs. NJ.com. July 1, 2011.

New Mexico

  • Lawmakers approve $6 billion budget, but Governor Martinez warned she will veto the bill if the legislature fails to include tax cuts. SantaFeNewMexican.com. February 14, 2012.
  • House committee approves 4% budget increase. Therepublic.com. February 6, 2012.
  • State budget shortfall grows to $452 million. BloombergBusinessWeek.com. November 11, 2010.

New York

  • The state budget is reduced from $134.8 billion (2010-11) to $132.7 billion (2011-12) to $132.5 billion (2012-13). Pressrepublican.com. January 22, 2012.
  • Tax plan passed, legislature faces smaller budget gap. NYTimes.com. December 9, 2011.
  • Gov. Cuomo and legislative leaders announced they had reached an agreement to overhaul New York State's income tax, creating a higher tax bracket for the highest-income residents and reducing the tax rate for millions of middle-class residents. NYTimes.com. December 6, 2011.
  • Gov. Cuomo estimates federal"sequestered cuts"could cost the state $5 billion loss in federal funds over the next 10 years. Timesunion.com. November 21, 2011.
  • Governor Cuomo's office now projects up to a $3.5 billion state budget shortfall for the next fiscal year. Bloomberg.com. November 14, 2011.
  • Medicaid overhaul saves $600 million in six months. TimesUnion.com. October 6, 2011.

North Carolina

Senate voted 31-19 to override Governor Perdue's veto of the budget on June 15.  Earlier the House had voted 73-46 to override the Governor's veto. CharlotteObserver.com. June 15, 2011.

North Dakota

  • The budget increased general fund spending by 20 percent over the next two years due to an accounting maneuver. The biennial budget that lawmakers approved includes several big-ticket spending items, such as $370 million in road repairs and another $342 million to reduce local property taxes. But those projects were paid for through a special account financed by excess oil-tax revenues - rather than the general fund - allowing Governor Jack Dalrymple and the Legislature to mask their effect on overall spending until after lawmakers had approved a two-year general fund budget on April 28. Stateline.org. May 2, 2011.

Ohio

  • Ohio privatized a portion of the state's prison system for $72.7 million. Rueters.com. September 1, 2011.

Oklahoma

  • Governor to push for reducing state personal income tax. NewsOK.com. December 27, 2011.

Oregon

  • Key legislators reach budget deal, avoid cuts to K-12 education and programs for seniors and the disabled, and create a cushion to cover future revenue declines. Mailtribune.com. February 1, 2012.
  • Oregon legislations to take on $300 million budget shortfall. NWCN.com. January 25, 2012.
  • Governor plans to order a hiring freeze for all state agencies, suspend new enrollments in the Oregon Health Plan and halt all "non-critical" government spending because of the state's budget woes. The governor signaled Tuesday that he will act quickly to impose a statewide hiring freeze of state workers and move forward with several other belt-tightening measures recommended by legislative budget leaders. The intent is to save money and prune spending before lawmakers come back to Salem in February for a short legislative session that promises to be dominated by budgetary concerns.

Pennsylvania

  • Tom Corbett proposed $27.14 billion budget that funds K-12 education but steeply cuts higher education spending, while maintaining "no new taxes" pledge. The proposal is 0.1% less than 2011 budget. Bizjournals.com. February 7, 2012.
  • Fiscal office expects $500 million shortfall by June. Bizjournals. February 6, 2012.
  • Governor reduces $160 million in state spending. Thetimestribune.com. January 5, 2012.

Rhode Island

  • New taxes proposed as an alternative to cuts. Boston.com. January 4, 2012.
  • Governor considers tax proposal as 2012 session nears. boston.com. December 30, 2011.

South Carolina

  • Corporations and residents will get a break on income taxes while public workers go for a fourth year in a row without pay raise under Haley's budget proposal. Businessweek.com. January 13, 2012.

South Dakota

Legislature passes balanced budget to eliminate state budget shortfall for FY 2012 on March 11, 2011. Capjournal.com. March 14, 2011.

Tennessee

Thousands of Tennesseans will get an extension of their unemployment benefits under the $30.78 billion budget approved by the General Assembly on May 21. The Senate voted 32-0 and the House passed it 96-0. The budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1 also includes $71 million for disaster relief from recent storms and flooding and a hospital assessment fee supported by the industry that would raise $449 million. It is designed to draw another $871 million in federal matching funds. June 8, 2011. 

Texas

  • Texas budget shortfall continues as Medicaid and social programs drain the budget. The state is short more than $4.1 billion. WTAW.com. February 21, 2012.
  • State agencies began to lay off employees, with almost 6,000 jobs expected to be lost in the current two-year budget cycle. UPI.com. July 13, 2011.

Utah

The approved budget adds back all but 1 percent of the 7 percent in cuts made earlier in the session. SB2, sponsored by Senate Budget Chairman Lyle Hillyard, R-Logan, was approved by both the Senate and the House and now goes to Gov. Gary Herbert for his action on the estimated $12 billion spending plan. Some areas of state government including higher education will see spending sliced by 2 percent or more, but public education emerged not only intact but with additional funds for enrollment growth. Deseretnews.com. March 8, 2011.

Vermont

Virginia

  • House & Senate budget committees approve proposals granting pay raises for state employees, more money for K-12 education, restore funding for health care, and help cover increasing pension costs. Fredericksburg.com. February 19, 2012.
  • State faces between $885 million and $1.5 billion state budget shortfall for FY 2013-14. Timesdispatch.com. November 15, 2011.

Washington

  • Accounting gimmicks prevail as House proposes bridging state budget gap by delaying school payments and making more than $400 million in spending cuts. Seattletimes.com. February 21, 2012.
  • Washington state Democrat legislators propose to band together against future revenues to help close a $1.5 billion deficit. WAstatewire.com. February 10, 2012
  • Moody's lowers WA outlook to "negative" based on revenue shortfall. WSJ.com. January 30, 2012.
  • Fitch warns WA state over budget gap. Chicagotribune.com. January 27, 2012.  
  • Senate Democrats unveil government reform ideas. AP.com. January 12, 2012.
  • Washington State Supreme Court rules that state has not adequately funded K-12 education. Additional costs of "adequate funding" could be between $6.9-8.9 billion per biennium. Myfreedomfoundation.com. January 6, 2012.
  • Governor wants to dump tax-vote requirement. Seattletimes.org. January 5, 2012.
  • Legislators propose income tax as part of overhaul. Newstribune.com. January 6, 2012.
  • New tax revenues? Yes, but first must reform state government. Seattletimes.com. December 27, 2011.
  • Business leaders open to sales tax increase. Bellihamherald.com. December 23, 2011.

West Virginia

West Virginia lawmakers passed a $10 billion state budget on March 18 that includes public employee pay raises, retiree bonuses and additional money for mine inspectors. The budget bill is about $134 million larger than what Governor Tomblin proposed when the regular session began in January. Charleston Gazette.com. March 18, 2011.

Wisconsin

Wyoming

$437 million surplus projected for June 30, 2012. Chron.com. September 22, 2011.