The unalloting has begun.
Earlier this week, the Governor sent a letter to legislators outlining the basics of his “priority based” unallotment options. The letter indicated that local government aids and credits, programs within the Department of Human Services, higher education, and state agency operating budgets would be top targets for unallotment.
But now the news is official…you can read the entire press release from the Governor on the MPR website. Here are the major reductions in the Governor’s unallotment plan announced on Friday afternoon (Remember, the Governor has the authority to carry out this plan without the approval of the legislature):
- First, the Governor must use the $155 million in the state’s budget reserve.
- $110 million from aids and credits to counties ($66 million) and cities ($44 million) – some small counties and cities are exempted.
- $73 million from human services – the specifics are listed in the press release and include programs such as mental health grants, Medical Assistance waiver programs and housing grants.
- $40 million from the state’s colleges and universities ($20 million each for University of Minnesota and MnSCU).
- $40 million from state agency operating budgets – about 10% of unspent funds. Agencies will be submitting their detailed plans for meeting this target by January 1st. A few agencies are exempted.
- The legislature has offered to reduce its budget by $2.2 million.
- $4 million from the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency.
- There are a few other reductions listed in the press release.
“As much as possible, we have worked to minimize the impact of these cuts by reducing accounts with surplus balances or excess funds that have not been spent or committed to projects,” said Governor Pawlenty. Now that the news is out, I’m sure we will begin to hear from those who will be affected.