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TODAY'S QUESTION: If the state budget needs to be cut, where should that happen?

Wednesday, January 6, 2010 | 1:32 p.m. CST

In a year of large budget cuts, the state might be looking at an additional $200 million deficit. Predicted revenues for the 2010 fiscal year, which ends July 1, will be 6.4 percent less than those collected the previous year.

Of the $23.7 billion budget, Gov. Jay Nixon has already cut $600 million. Nixon's budget director, Linda Luebbering, said she hopes the additional cuts will be announced by the end of this month. Luebbering also said additional layoffs for state employees are possible.

In October, Nixon announced $204 million in budget cuts. The proportionally largest cuts then went to the Secretary of State's office and the Department of Natural Resources. He also cut a significant portion from administration costs.

Nixon has made a deal with higher education institutions to decrease funds by 5.2 percent if tuition is not cut, but that was before the latest report.

K-12 education is another area that gets a large portion of the state budget, but politicians often dislike to cut that.

Other areas that could be cut include public safety, health programs such as Medicaid, social services and the Department of Transportation.

Where do you think Nixon should cut the budget?


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