Panel proposes trimming AG budget

If legislative leaders get their way, Attorney General Jim Hood’s fiscal 2015 budget will be slashed and he won’t get an additional $5 million requested to continue with BP litigation.

The Joint Legislative Budget Committee recommends a general fund budget of $8.28 million for the attorney general’s office, which is $223,537 less than year’s budget of $8.5 million. Hood requested a budget of $9.6 million.

Hood said his office’s actual general fund expenditures run about $9.65 million per year, so the $8.2 million recommended by budget leaders for FY 2015 is significantly below what is needed to operate.

The agency has been covering a “shortfall” in operating expenses with money that is earmarked for matching federal funds, officials told lawmakers.

Clarion Ledger