A report from the state budget department says the state is deep in red ink for the 2010-2011 budget cycle. The report says 70 percent of the 1.2 billion dollar deficit is due to lower than expected income tax receipts. The document also said the budget problem will grow even larger in the future with a projected budget deficit of $5.4 billion in the 2012-2013 budget.
The forecast means Governor Pawlenty and DFL lawmakers will have to cut spending or increase revenue to balance the state’s budget. In July, Pawlenty unilaterally cut $2.7 billion in spending after he couldn’t reach a budget deal with the Legislature. Lawmakers begin the 2010 session on February 4th.