“While not all issues are resolved, overall this is a prudent, balanced budget that I believe will serve the state’s taxpayers, agencies and their constituents well for the next fiscal year. I am especially pleased the Legislature accepted my proposal to carry forward $60 million from the Health Care Expendable Fund as a cushion against the revenue shortfalls that are expected next year,” Governor Barbour said.
“I appreciate the hard work it took to reach a consensus on many issues and want to thank legislators like Senators Alan Nunnelee and Hob Bryan and House members Robert Johnson and Johnny Stringer as well as Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant and House Speaker Billy McCoy,” he said.
But, sounding a cautionary note, Governor Barbour said this budget contains so much federal stimulus money that “we must learn to wean ourselves from it soon, as it ends after next year.” Spending on all three levels of education will be the highest ever, but the federal stimulus funds make that possible.