State Government Could See Major Budget Cuts Due to COVID-19

State agency heads were warned two weeks ago by state budget director John Hicks that there was a lot of uncertainty about how much state revenue will fall in the coming months.    

Hicks instructed the state agencies to submit plans by last Friday that would cut their spending by 12.5 percent for the remainder of the fiscal year which ends June 30th   Hicks said all executive branch agencies will be affected by the cuts.

Also, a freeze on hiring and discretionary spending was put in place unless they are a necessary response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Locally, State Senator Max Wise and State Representative Jeff Hoover both say a special session could very well take place next month.   Kentucky law requires budget modifications if state revenues drop more than 5% in a given fiscal year.   

The state’s consensus forecasting group is scheduled to meet on May 22nd, according to Wise and Hoover, and if projected revenues fall below 5% as is anticipated, a special session of the General Assembly is likely for some time in June.

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