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Sep-16-2010 16:53printcomments

Washington State quarterly revenue projection down $1.4 billion

(Olympia, Washington) - The September revenue forecast for Washington state government shows projected General Fund revenue down $1.4 billion. The forecast covers the remainder of this biennium (2009–11) as well as the next budget period (2011–13). The figure was released today by the Washington State Economic and Revenue Forecast Council.

According to Dr. Arun Raha, the state's chief revenue forecaster, "The Washington recovery seems to have lost momentum in the summer months after strong growth in the spring. The reasons are not Washington specific, but due to the slowing of the national economy. We remain optimistic about our aerospace and software publishing industries, however."

"The sluggish recovery continues to have its effect on state revenues," Gov. Chris Gregoire said. "Unfortunately, as revenues continue to decline, the demand for state services is stronger than ever."

Revenue for the current budget period, 2009–11, is projected to decrease $770 million, resulting in total projected General Fund revenue for the biennium of $28.5 billion. Revenue for the next budget period, 2011–13, is projected to decrease $669 million, resulting in total projected General Fund revenue for that biennium of $33.4 billion.

"With this drop in revenue, our current budget is now projected to be in the red," said Marty Brown, director of the state Office of Financial Management. "We will enact cuts to address this problem while we look for ways to transform the budget and address shortfalls for the next budget period."

The forecast projects an ending fund deficit for 2009–11 of $516 million, which includes $4 million in the rainy-day fund.

State of Washington Office of Financial Management News Release

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