Florida's current budget hole: $672-million
Gov. Charlie Crist's aides have prepared a budget amendment to borrow more than $672-million from the state's Budget Stabilization Fund to avert a deficit.
The Buzz obtained proposed language from Crist's office that will ask the Legislative Budget Commission to shift $672,407,249 from the BSF. The request will be voted on at the LBC's next meeting on Sept. 10. The amount equals half of the total amount in the stabilization fund as of May 1. Crist and lawmakers had better hope the economy bounces back, because state law requires that all of the $672-million be repaid to the BSF over the next several years.
The amendment language hints that this budget transfer might not be the last: "In November of 2008, the Revenue Estimating Conference will meet again and determine if adjustments to the General Revenue Financial Outlook Statement are necessary. Following that conference, the Governor's Office, in collaboration with the legislative and judicial branches, will consider specific options to eliminate any remaining projected 2008-09 General Revenue Fund deficit.