Optimism Fades As W.Va. Predicts $100M Budget Hole

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Charleston, W.Va. (AP) -- Lagging tax revenues are threatening West Virginia state government with a budget deficit.

But Gov. Joe Manchin is ruling out public worker layoffs, cuts to services or tax hikes to close a hole that's projected to grow to $100 million by the end of this budget year, June 30.

Manchin instead has asked agencies to review spending.

He also has $168 million in carry-over revenue as a cushion.

October saw general tax revenues bring in $287 million, or $1.3 million more than expected. Taxes on coal and business activity both beat their monthly estimates.

But results have slumped for two key sources: Personal income and sales taxes.

That has left the state with $16 million less than expected so far this budget year. Officials believe that shortfall will grow.

(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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