Posted on July 16, 2014 at 6:30 PM
Wednesday, Jul 16 at 6:30 PM
FRANKFORT, Ky. (WHAS11)—Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear signed a budget reduction order on Wednesday to help fill a $91 million General Fund deficit to keep the 2014 Fiscal Year budget balanced.
The budget for the 2012-2014 budget biennium, enacted by the General Assembly includes a plan that allows the governor to manage revenue shortfalls. He has implemented 14 different budget reductions totally nearly $1.7 billion since he took office.
“We were somewhat limited in our approach to fill this budget hole given it occurred at the end of the 2014 Fiscal Year,” Gov. Beshear said. “But as in previous reductions, two goals guided our decisions – to take steps to make government as efficient and as lean as possible, and to protect as best we can the core services that offer help and hope to our people and represent important long-term investments in Kentucky’s future: education, health care and public safety.”
The state’s budget office announced a nearly $91 million shortfall last week. The reduction order uses excess funds that are surplus to the budgets of state agencies.
To deal with the short fall Beshear’s order included transferring $50 million from various agencies funds that are in excess of the budgeted amounts.
“The use of fund transfers is a valuable tool in how we manage and balance the overall budget of the Commonwealth, and one that keeps us from making deeper cuts to state agencies,” Gov. Beshear said. “The recent ruling by the Kentucky Supreme Court again affirms the constitutionality of this practice, thus ensuring much needed flexibility for the executive and legislative branches.”
Another $15 million will come from unspent General Fund monies. General Fund appropriations in the executive brands will be reduced by $3 million, $1.5 million will be reduced for the judicial branch and $287,600 will come from the legislative branch.
Beshear will also use $21.2 million from the Budget Reserve Trust Fund, known as the rainy day fund. The rainy day fund will have $77.1 million remaining after this withdrawl.
The governor also signed a budget reduction order road fund to fill a $22.2 million shortfall. This order relies primarily on the year-end, unexpected Road Fund appropriations.
“No budgeted road projects will be negatively impacted by this necessary balancing action,” Gov. Beshear said.