Alabama Looks to Cut Budget, Not Raise Taxes

Tuesday, 01 Mar 2011 02:24 PM

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Alabama’s governor and state lawmakers are eyeing cuts in state spending to balance the state budget as they kick-off their legislative session, the Birmingham News reported Tuesday.

The session started Tuesday.

"It's going to be a very, very difficult financial year for the state," said state Sen. Arthur Orr, a Decatur Republican and chair of the Senate's Finance and Taxation-General Fund Committee. 

Robert Bentley
Gov. Robert Bentley

On Monday, Gov. Robert Bentley cut 3 percent or $163 million from the Education Trust Fund because of lower-than-expected tax collections. The governor indicated that he’s planning to make more cuts in the General Fund from this year's budget. 

Other issues lawmakers expect to take up during the session are illegal immigration, the new federal health care law, tax breaks for businesses and public employees’ pensions. Many vowed not to raise taxes.

"Now is not the time to increase taxes, to increase the burden on families. They're struggling enough the way it is," said state Rep. DuWayne Bridges, a Valley Republican. 

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