Republicans say deal on Montana budget is elusive
HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Republican lawmakers say they aren’t ready to reach a deal on Montana’s budget problems, pushing back against claims from Gov. Steve Bullock’s administration that an agreement was close at hand.
Bullock’s office said this week the administration was nearing a deal with GOP leaders to plug a $227 million hole in the budget.
But Republican House Speaker Austin Knudsen told reporters Friday that Bullock’s office was “grossly overstating” the party’s interest in a proposed compromise that includes temporary tax increases.
Republicans argue the Democratic governor can address the shortfall under state law that allows him to cut up to 10 percent of general fund spending.
Democrats counter that Republicans accepted an unrealistic budget picture in March to avoid cuts or tax increases