I gathered a couple of Maine state budget stories from the Kennebec Journal, the newspaper in Augusta, Maine. Click on the headline or at the bottom of each tease and it should bring you to the Kennebec Journal website for the full story.
As always, please let me know about a bad link and I will do what I can to fix it.
BY MATT WICKENHEISER
Maine Sunday Telegram
As Gov. John Baldacci began his presentation Friday on closing a $438 million budget gap, he noted that the state is having such briefings “a little too often.”
Several times a year, for the last several years, Baldacci has had to lay out hard plans for Maine. State revenue has been in a free-fall as income tax, sales tax and other funding sources have dried up in the recession.
In the last year, the Legislature has worked to cut the budget again and again. In early January, it started with a budget gap of $166 million, then later that month got a two-year budget calling for another $200 million in cuts. In May, revenue shortfalls led to another $569 million gap.
BY SCOTT MONROE
AUGUSTA – Steve Hoad listened to Gov. John Baldacci announce plans on Friday for cuts and other adjustments that total $438 million.
The proposed cuts include a reduction of $67.8 million to the Department of Health and Human Services and the elimination of 6.5 positions.
BY MATTHEW STONE
AUGUSTA – For Maine’s school districts, universities and community colleges, the package of budget cuts Gov. John Baldacci announced Friday confirmed the grim news they’ve been bracing for throughout the fall.
The governor’s plan to plug a $438 million hole in the current two-year budget cuts $73.2 million in aid to local school districts and $15.9 million in funding to the state’s university and community college systems.
BY MEGHAN V. MALLOY
AUGUSTA – County jails and other correctional facilities could see more positions lost or unfilled next year if Gov. John Baldacci’s latest budget plan, which flat funds jails at $3.5 million, is adopted for the next fiscal year.
“I don’t know how many and where, but it would happen in (fiscal year 2011),” Kennebec County Administrator Robert Devlin said Friday. “If it looks like it’s looming, we’ll do what we did last time, which is not filling vacancies.”