Lawmakers arriving in Montgomery for the start of the 2012 legislative session got bad news. The Legislative Fiscal Office forecast Tuesday that the money for next year's state General Fund budget will be more than one-fourth smaller than this year's appropriations.
The fiscal office said this year's appropriations total $1.87 billion, but next year's revenue should only be $1.34 billion. That's a drop of nearly $538 million.
There's also bad news about the existing budget.
Interim director Norris Green said revenue is coming in about 10 percent below appropriations, which means the governor will have to consider cuts.
The forecast for the education budget is not as gloomy. It should drop from $5.63 billion this year to $5.48 billion next year.
That's a decline of nearly $152 million.
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