State tax revenue already behind, cuts could follow - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

State tax revenue already behind, cuts could follow

By Mike McDaniel - bio | email | Twitter

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Only three months into the state's new fiscal year and already the Mississippi State Tax Commission says revenues are 7.7 percent behind what experts thought they'd be, which could usher in a new round of cuts for a struggling budget.

This comes at a time Higher Education Commissioner Hank Bounds delivered a sobering address to the Southern Miss campus Wednesday and now has campus leaders once again preparing. Bounds addressed the university during it's fall convocation saying there's a strong possibility for more cuts this year and larger cuts in the next few years. Governor Haley Barbour cut nearly $172 million in early September and hasn't ruled out more to come.

Bounds says it's an issue concerning all of the state's public universities and it's going to take a lot of work to meet budget requirements.  

"We've gone through tough times before and we survived and we will survive this economic downturn. This is probably the worse that we've ever had to face, but we're going to have to be a lot smarter in how we approach this problem. We can't think about right now. We've got to start thinking two, three and four years out," said Bounds.

Bounds says USM is as financially stable as any university in the state, the problem comes in because the university is receiving about the same funding as it was in 2008.

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