Based on a preliminary audit by the State Controller, the fiscal year 2008 will close with a deficit of $33.6 million. The deficit is a combination of a revenue shortfall of $8.2 million and overspending by State departments totaling $27.0 million. To address this shortfall in FY 2008 and its implications for FY 2009 RIPEC calls for a three-step-approach:
- Review all expenditure commitments for FY 2009, and assess if the savings included in the FY 2009 budget can be implemented;
- Hold hearings that will address the state’s options for balancing FY 2008, the implications for FY 2009, and what safeguards can be put in place to avoid such shortfalls in the future; and
- Reassess the state’s fiscal situation after the November Estimating Conference has met
If needed, the Governor should submit a supplemental budget as soon as possible in order to have sufficient time to implement any additional fiscal control measurements.