New state budget includes spending increases

Friday, June 27, 2008 | 4:07 p.m. CDT; updated 6:45 p.m. CDT, Sunday, July 20, 2008

JEFFERSON CITY— Gov. Matt Blunt signs a $22.4 billion operating budget for Missouri.

The new state budget is to take effect Tuesday. It includes spending increases for public schools, college scholarships and medical providers who treat low-income patients.

In fact, the budget increases state spending at a greater rate than its expected revenue growth. The state is able to do that by tapping into money left over from previous years.

The Republican governor calls it a responsible budget, noting Missouri’s finances have fared better than some other states as the economy has had troubles.

Blunt said he made five line-item vetoes. Those included a $500,000 expenditure from Conservation Department funds toward an improved communications system for state and local emergency responders. Blunt said the agency opposed the expenditure.

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