The state is on track to end the fiscal year on June 30 with a $161.7 million budget deficit, according to state Comptroller Kevin Lembo.
Lembo certified the numbers Friday afternoon in his monthly letter to Gov. Dannel P. Malloy.
Lembo’s deficit calculation includes the recent $67 million drop in revenue between January and April. Those revenue numbers calculated by the legislature’s Office of Fiscal Analysis and Malloy’s budget office Thursday show Lembo’s revenue projections on April 1 were only $500,000 off the mark.
The deficit Lembo certified on Friday is $28.9 million more than Malloy’s office anticipated on April 1.
Overall, general fund revenue this fiscal year is projected to fall $166.1 million short of original budget projections, Lembo said. The largest shortfalls are related to federal grants, the health provider tax, and the income tax. The most significant revenue gains are in the sales tax and the corporation tax.
The largest single deficiency is $108 million in the Medicaid account.
It’s still unclear at the moment how Malloy will resolve the deficit with two months left in the fiscal year.
“There are still two months in the fiscal year until June 30th. We will take appropriate action to achieve additional cost savings and keep our state’s budget balanced for the year,” Malloy’s budget director, Ben Barnes, said Thursday in an email.
Malloy insisted on the campaign trail that Connecticut would not end the fiscal year with a deficit and promised he could handle any shortfall on his own. He has issued at least three budget rescissions since last November, though none of those attempts have erased the deficit. But they have kept it under the amount that would force him to send a deficit mitigation plan to the legislature.
There is currently $519 million in the Rainy Day Fund.
Following Lembo’s certification of the deficit, Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano, R-North Haven, released a statement that might have contained a little edge of sarcasm:
“Apparently, Gov. Malloy must have a plan,” Fasano said. “Apparently, he’s got this all under control and his plan does not include draining our state’s Rainy Day Fund. I have to assume this is the case, because no leader would take our state down this path without having a solution.”