Scott Walker’s 2015-17 budget shortfall balloons to $1.8 billion

by Ben Hoffman

Madison — The expected shortfall for the next two-year state budget starting in July has risen to nearly $1.8 billion, or about half of what it was when Gov. Scott Walker took office in January 2011.

Meanwhile, the state’s projected gap in its current budget ending June has risen to $396 million — or about 1.2% of the spending planned for the 2013-’15 budget.

The Republican governor resolved a more than $3 billion budget shortfall in the months after taking office, but the latest projections show the state is running through the resulting surplus. The state is again facing a gap in the 2015-’17 budget because of tax cuts enacted by Walker and lawmakers and lagging growth in other state taxes in recent months.

Burke, a former Trek Bicycle executive, seized on the new projections.

“Governor Walker’s fiscally irresponsible approach and his failed stewardship of a lagging economy have resulted in a state budget picture that is a mess,” she said in a statement. “I have spent my career balancing budgets and insisting on accountability; setting priorities and getting the biggest bang for the buck. Gov. Walker has spent money we don’t have. In the business world, if a CEO created this big of a financial mess, he would be fired.”

<a href=”http://www.jsonline.com/news/statepolitics/wisconsin-state-budget-shortfall-projected-at-nearly-18-billion-b99345660z1-274364501.html”>Read more…</a>

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