As Americans struggled with the worst fiscal crisis in a generation, states will remember the first half of 2009 for staggering budget deficits, record unemployment and the largest infusion of federal dollars into their treasuries since the Great Depression.
To date, lawmakers in about half the states have closed shop for the legislative year. But as tax revenues continue to come in lower than expected, it’s a good bet that many will have to reconvene to balance their budgets as required by law.
Stateline.org’s annual review of state-by-state legislative actions, thus far, finds four resorted to higher personal income and sales taxes, seven levied heftier tobacco taxes and at least 10 raised motor vehicle registration or court fees. But it may not be enough. Experts predict a mammoth $121 billion deficit awaits states in fiscal 2010, which starts July 1 for all but four states.
Read the full report Recession Pounds States' Budgets on Stateline.org.