State agencies in Mississippi are facing another round of mid-year budget cuts. Governor Phil Bryant is ordering department and agency heads to cut one-half-of-one percent from this year’s appropriations.
For the second time this year, Governor Phil Bryant is being forced to slash state spending.
In all, Bryant is cutting $25 million from the f-y 2016 general fund budget. He’s also taking about $10 million from the state’s rainy day fund.
The Governor says state revenues are down and he knows why...
“People forget that Mississippi was 13th in the nation in oil and gas production,” says Bryant. “So the drop in oil and gas, petroleum industry has taken a particular toll on our economy.
A few agencies and special funds are safe from the chopping block, veterans' affairs, the state Military Department, student loans and schools for the blind and deaf are exempt. But the Mississippi Adequate Education Program and the Department of Public Safety, which were safe during the last round of reductions, are being cut.
Bryant says the decision to cut the budget was difficult.
“You want to be able to fund the necessary needs in government. Want to be able to provide the revenue that we need for education purposes, public safety. That is the most troubling part.”
Lawmakers just spent the last few days finalizing a budget for fiscal year 2017, which begins July 1. That budget imposes more, deeper cuts to state agencies as well as a $415 million tax cut.