Beshear Still Looking For Ways to Mend Budget

by scrosby on August 18, 2009

From Kentucky Public Radio’s Tony McVeigh

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear is still weighing how much to cut state spending to make sure the commonwealth’s budget will be balanced at the end of the current fiscal year.

Lawmakers approved a budget-balancing plan in the June special session, but they inserted some tax breaks Gov. Beshear had not anticipated. One of the breaks, which will cost the state $18-million a year, waives state income taxes for active duty military personnel, effective January 1st.

Beshear is still looking for ways to pay for it.

“I’m gonna be meeting in the next couple of weeks with our Budget Director and new Cabinet Secretary Mary Lassiter as we try to finalize those plans,” he says.

Beshear’s budget-balancing plan approved in June included 2.6% spending cuts this fiscal year, but with the tax breaks, he says that likely won’t be enough.

The governor is not getting any help from state revenue collections. Tax receipts last month were down 4%.

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