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Lawmakers Revealing Budget Outline for FY14

By Lawayne Childrey | Published 11 Dec 2012 04:00pm | comments
Mississippi Joint Legislative Budget Committee

Top Mississippi lawmakers are hoping to eliminate more than 2,000 vacant state jobs as part of their fiscal 2014 budget proposal. MPB's Lawayne Childrey reports on the recommendations of the Joint Legislative Budget Committee. 

During a brief meeting in Jackson yesterday  members of the Joint Legislative Budget Committee recommended a balanced general fund budget of  $5.5 billion dollars for fiscal year 2014.  That includes eliminating nearly 21 hundred state jobs.   Lieutenant Governor Tate Reeves says the reduction would save the state millions of dollars.

"In essence you've got state agencies that have approximately 3,000 PINS that have been authorized by the legislature in which there are no people that have been hired and in fact they've been unfilled for more than 60 days. And so we went in and cut a large number of those PINS and de-funded them from the budget."

While the new budget suggest spending slightly less money than the current year. House Speaker Phillip Gunn says he is pleased that lawmakers were able to reduce the states dependency on onetime federal dollars while staying within its means.

"We have been able to bring forth a budget that level funds a number of important state agencies like MAEP, like Highway patrol and those things that we feel like are important. And I think we only had four agencies that received an increase over 2013 and I think those are all highlights that I think we can be proud of."

Now that the joint legislative budget recommendations are on the table, House Appropriations member George Flaggs, believes it’s a  viable starting point.

"We need to take this budget and compare it to the Governor's budget and try to combine them to get a good budget. I'm absolutely confident that at the end of the day agencies are going to be proud of what we've done."

Republican governor Phil Bryant released his proposed budget last month recommending most state agencies take a 1.5% cut. The house and senate will began considering  the two plans in January as they face an April deadline.  Lawayne Childrey, MPB News.

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Mississippi Joint Legislative Budget Committee


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