As new holes emerge in their budgets, more and more states are making spending cuts well before their legislatures reconvene next year.
Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) on Thursday (Oct. 29) is expected to announce $600 million in budget cuts that could include up to 2,000 layoffs, the Boston Herald reports . "With the state's reserves already tapped, Patrick has little choice but to gouge every aspect of state government, including already hard-hit human services and local aid," the paper says.
Patrick is far from alone.
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon (D) on Wednesday (Oct. 28) trimmed the Show Me State's budget by $204 million and announced layoffs of 363 state workers, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports . In neighboring Iowa, Gov. Chet Culver (D) also wielded his budget ax Wednesday, announcing 180 state-worker layoffs and furloughs for more than 3,200 nonunion employees, the Des Moines Register reports . In another Midwestern state, Kansas, Gov. Mark Parkinson (D) said he is likely to make more budget cuts before January's regular session, serving notice that the state's schools should prepare to be hit, the Lawrence Journal-World reports .
In New Mexico, $253 million in cuts approved by the Legislature last week could result in early releases for 660 prisoners and the closure of two prisons, Gov. Bill Richardson (D) warned, according to the Sante Fe New Mexican .