Oregon's tax revenues are $80 million ahead of projections for the current two-year budget, but economists say the outlook for the next two years is more pessimistic.
“We’re still in pretty good shape,” [state economist Mark McMullen] said during the state’s quarterly economic and revenue forecast. “We expect a little more revenue than we did three months ago. However, over time, the slower-growth forecast does more and more damage to the state budget.”
“The good news is today’s forecast means we won’t have to make cuts in this current biennium’s budget,” Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem, said in a statement. “As school kids prepare to return to classes next month, it’s good to know that the doors of our schools can stay open and that we won’t be forced to close prisons or cut services for seniors.
“Looking ahead to next session, today’s forecast makes it clear the coming biennium will present a whole new set of challenges. Our economy and revenue are growing, but not strong enough to keep up with our commitments. In 2013, it will be critical that we prioritize the things that are most important to Oregonians – educating our children and providing healthy and safe communities.”
Read more at The Statesman Journal.