Thursday, April 30, 2009

Budget? What Budget? Michigan $1.3B in the Red

Bam! Right back to harsh reality. Remember that budget deficit for this year, the one that was estimated to be at $785 million just a few weeks ago? Well, check again.

Michigan's mushrooming budget deficit has grown to $1.3 billion, state officials confirmed today.

Legislative leaders and administration officials were informed Tuesday night by Budget Director Bob Emerson that the shortfall in revenue for this budget year, estimated at $785 million only a couple of weeks ago, has climbed more than 50 percent, sources said.

That's gotta be a mid-year record. Rumor had it that agreement had been reached on $300 million or so in cuts towards the first figure, with the rest to be filled with stimulus money. Granholm was going to issue the Executive Order, Repubs weren't pitching a fit, Jelinek even quoted to MIRS...

"We're going as deep as far as we can," said Senate Appropriations Committee Chair Ron JELINEK (R-Three Oaks). When asked if the whole $785 million would be addressed in cuts, he said. "I doubt it. I think that's pretty ambitious. We don't want to lay off the whole state."

... which totally contradicts everything that Bishop ever said about this, but anyway....

Now what? And, how in the world do you do the budgets for FY 2010 with these numbers? Everyone who was complaining about the cuts already on the table - you better start thinking about working on selling new revenue. We all love the State Fair, but in light of these numbers, saving the local police department might have to come first.