Springfield, MO On Thursday, the state budget director announced more than $67 million in cuts tostate programs and the state workforce. Ninety-six employees are being laid off and 870 positions are being eliminated. KSMU's Missy Shelton has more.
With the most recent round of budget cuts, some state employees are out of work and an entire state program has shut down. The state department of social services took the biggest hit in terms of dollars cut. It will lose more than 11 million dollars. Linda Luebering, the budget director for the state of Missouri describes the decision-making process involved in making these withholdings from state departments.
All totaled, more than 67 million dollars will be withheld from state departments and agencies. That's well below the 300 million dollar mark which is the estimated budget shortfall in the state. Luebering says the plan is to make up the difference by selling off interests in future payments from the tobacco settlement, often called tobacco securitization.
But some republican lawmakers call a reliance on tobacco securitatization risky. Rod Jetton is majority leader-elect in the house. He says it's unreliable source of money.
Jetton also criticizes the administration's approach to eliminating positions. He says it should be done in a more effective way.
Budget director Linda Luebering announced the budget cuts'Governor Bob Holden did not attend the press conference. Governor Holden says governors historically have not made the announcement of withholdings. Republicans criticized the governor for failing to make an appearance.