The Doyle administration is looking for places to cut just in case the budget impasse continues.
Republicans call it a scare tactic. Linda Barth in the Department of Administration calls it something else. Prudent.
For starters, DOA Secretary Michael Morgan is asking Health and Family Services to come up with a contingency plan that would cut Medicaid payments possibly as much as twenty percent.
Barth says that means taking a look at cutting payments to medical providers and which ones. Barth says it's not a matter of trying to scare anyone, it's just a way, she says, to be able to provide services to the people of Wisconsin without a state budget.
By law, the government is supposed to operate at current budget levels until a budget is in place but Barth says a number of tax reforms already passed are now taking effect and that will reduce some tax revenues.
That's why, Barth says, the governor proposed other forms of revenue such as the increased cigarette tax and tax on big oil.
Medicaid may not be the only thing targeted for potential cuts. Roads and prisons are possibilities.