The Campus Chronicle
Vol. XVII, Issue 38
for the Amherst campus of the University of Massachusetts
July 12, 2002

 Page One Grain & Chaff Obituaries Letters to the Chronicle Archives Feedback Weekly Bulletin

 Page One Grain & Chaff Obituaries Letters to the Chronicle Archives Feedback Weekly Bulletin




Hope alive for budget by July 31

by Daniel J. Fitzgibbons, Chronicle staff


hile state offices continue to operate on a one-month interim budget, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee said this week that a final fiscal 2003 spending package could be completed before Aug. 1.

     According to the State House News Service, Rep. John Rogers (D-Norwood), one of six members of the budget conference committee, said the panel is "making progress" on resolving differences between the $23.2 billion measure approved by the Senate and the $22.9 billion package adopted by the House. However, Rogers also said "anything can happen" as the committee tries to hammer out a compromise plan.

     Last week, Rogers' counterpart on the Senate side expressed similar hopes that a final budget could be completed by month's end. Sen. Mark Montigny (D-New Bedford) said the committee is "in the ballpark" of finishing before Aug. 1.

     Before any final budget can be adopted, legislative leaders and Acting Gov. Jane Swift must reach agreement on revenue projections for fiscal 2003. The Swift administration has repeatedly warned that legislative budget planners have based their proposals on overly optimistic estimates.

     The gap could range from $400 million to $650 million, depending on whose estimates are used. House negotiators and the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation place the shortfall at about $600 million, while the Senate puts the figure at about $400 million. Swift recently said the gap is about $540 million.

  UMass Logo This Web site is an Official Publication of the University of Massachusetts Amherst. It is maintained by the Web Development Group of the Division of Communications & Marketing. © 2002