Liveblogging the Education Committee meeting today…

Liveblogging the Education Committee meeting today…

November 17, 2009 Posted by Maine Heritage Policy Center - No Comments

9:15 am

Though all the talk this fall has been about the looming budget shortfall, now estimated to be as much as $400 million, the Education Committee began this morning talking about “Part QQQ” of the state budget passed last spring. Part QQQ was the the section of the budget in which the Appropriations Committee tasked itself with finding $30 million in savings.

The legislature, in other words, passed a “balanced” budget last spring with a $30 million hole in it which they are still working to fill. That $30 million is in addition to the $300-$400 million gap that has opened, as a result of plunging revenues, since the passage of that budget many months ago.

With regard to “Part QQQ,” the Education Committee and Department sent the Appropriations Committee a list of proposed cuts, none of which Appropriations has yet adopted.  What Appropriations has done or will do with that list of cuts will impact what the Education Committee comes up with for cuts to address the $400 million shortfall still ahead.

So, not one budget shortfall on the agenda today, but two!