A new report warns that Wisconsin could face a $2.2 billion deficit heading in the next state budget.
The study conducted by former state Revenue Secretary Rick Chandler was based on estimates of the state seeing normal revenue growth of about 3.2-percent heading into the 2011-2013 budget. He says those reasonable levels would leave the state facing a deficit, even if most agency budgets were frozen and education, medical assistance, and corrections only saw modest increases.
Even if state revenue collections climb, which they often do coming out of a recession, Chandler says there would still be a deficit to deal with. He says growth of around five-percent would still leave Wisconsin with a $1.2 billion gap.
Chandler says the findings show the state needs to consider new ways to balance the budget, other than just trimming funding from agencies. He says there needs to be some fundamental changes to how revenues are structured and services are delivered.
The study was commissioned by the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute.
AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:04)