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$56 million in budget gaps estimated for this year

2 years 1 month 1 week ago April 16, 2015 Apr 16, 2015 Thursday, April 16 2015 April 16, 2015 8:18 AM in News
Source: Associated Press

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - As if lawmakers didn't have enough budget worries with next year's $1.6 billion shortfall, state senators learned this year's budget is short an estimated $56 million.

Sherry Phillips-Hymel, the Senate's chief budget analyst, gave the Senate Finance Committee a list Wednesday of outstanding financial gaps for the fiscal year that ends June 30.

On the list, the state's public school financing formula is short $36 million and the TOPS free college tuition program needs $5 million to cover a higher-than-projected number of students.

Also, Phillips-Hymel said the Medicaid program has $12 million less than needed to pay for expected services and sheriffs are owed $3 million more for housing state prisoners in local jails.

Lawmakers will consider ways to plug those holes during the legislative session.

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