The nation’s weak economy has landed some big states in a desperate struggle to balance their budgets before July 1 when their new fiscal years begin, reports USA Today–a development that threatens funding for education and other services. Arizona, California, New Jersey, Nevada, and Pennsylvania are among states that must slash spending or raise taxes to straighten out their finances. Nevada Gov. Jim Gibbons, a Republican, plans to call a special session of the Legislature next week to find a last-minute solution to a budget shortfall approaching $1 billion. Nationally, state and local government revenue rose 3.5 percent in the first quarter compared with a year earlier, outpacing private-sector growth. But that average is deceptive. Revenue is booming in about a dozen states because of high energy and agricultural prices, said Scott Pattison, executive director of the National Association of State Budget Officers, which issued a report on state finances June 19. Texas, New Mexico, Montana, West Virginia, and Wyoming are among the thriving states. Yet, the budget picture is grim in states that had soaring housing prices that collapsed…

Click here for the full story

About the Author:

eSchool News