Budget deficit could grow by more than $300 millionby Dara Kam | March 18th, 2011
State economists are hashing out their new estimate of how much less money lawmakers have to spend this year.
Their last general revenue estimate projected the state would collect about $3.6 billion less this year in taxes and fees than last. But this morning’s estimates range from an additional $332.4 million drop – bringing the deficit to $3.9 billion – to a gain of $47.4 million that would decrease the spending gap to closer to $3.5 billion.
The three groups of economists representing the legislature’s Bureau of Economic and Demographic Research, Gov. Rick Scott and the Department of Revenue will crunch numbers throughout the day.
EDR’s initial $332.4 million in additional lost income is the highest. Scott’s office projects an extra $109.7 million drop. And the department’s was the rosiest – a gain of $47.4 million.
The average of the three – $131.6 million – would bump up the deficit to $3.75 billion.