The state budget is facing a $30 million dollar shortfall, according to the Legislative Budget Office. Legislative budget assistant Jeff Pattison briefed lawmakers today. He stressed that the number could grow or shrink between now and the end of the fiscal year.
“We are looking at about a 30 million dollar problem, but that’s as of January 14th. There are a lot of things that are going to be happening between now and June 30th. My expectation is these numbers will still be changing when we get to the committee of conference in June.”
One cause of the budget gap is a growth in Medicaid spending. As of mid-September the state had spent 47 million dollars above estimates. Some of the Medicaid deficit is due to changes in federal eligibility guidelines, but about a 13 million is because the state has failed to meet saving targets due to delays in implementing Medicaid managed care.