The coronavirus outbreak is expected to take even more money out of the state budget than lawmakers were originally expecting.
Lawmakers thought they’d have to cut between 2 and 3 billion from next year’s budget. But the state’s chief economist, Kate Watkins, says they need to cut 3.3 billion dollars. She says the virus’ impact on the economy over the last two months has been "unimaginable."
WATKINS: Getting back up to that pre-Covid economic levels of activity it’s going to take years to get back up to that level.
Watkins says there is a lot of uncertainty in the forecast and a resurgence of the virus could make the projections even worse. Lawmakers are planning to return to the Capitol later this month to decide how to cut about 10 percent from their spending plan.