Hillyard: Drawing on rainy day fund may be inevitable

Despite many requests from advocates earlier this year, state lawmakers did not take money out of Utah’s “rainy day” fund to soften the blow of budget cuts during the general session. Sen. Lyle Hillyard, R-Logan, said he believes the fund probably will be tapped in the near future to help get through the rest of FY 2010, which started in July. Hillyard is co-chairman of the Legislature’s executive appropriations committee. He said he is not sure at this point how much lawmakers will need to draw out of the fund, which currently stands at $419 million. He said it looks like the state will be $700 million in the hole by the time the next general session rolls around, especially because there will be no federal stimulus money. He thinks Gov. Gary Herbert will be more willing to make the tough cuts that former Gov. Jon Huntsman was not willing to make.

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