State officials announce good news for the financial stability of the state

AUGUSTA, Maine (WABI) - State officials say there is good news for the financial stability of the state.

The Commissioner of the Maine Department of Administrative and Financial Services says both the General Fund and the Highway Fund will be in balance for fiscal year 2020.

But the state is still facing a revenue shortfall.

It could be as high as $200 million when the fiscal year ends on June 30th.

Commissioner Kirsten Figueroa told the legislature's Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee this morning sales and income taxes took their worst hit in April with unemployment soaring.

Steep declines in revenue from restaurants, hotels, retail stores and care dealers added to that.

But Figueroa says the Legislature put the state in a good position when it left $193 million in the General Fund.

Lawmakers also added $17.5 million to the Rainy Day Fund before adjourning.

$258 million currently sits in the state's "Rainy Day Fund."

Senator Cathy Breen of the Appropriations & Financial Affairs Committee said, "The state is going to break even, because of the savings we have on hand, and because of our good fiscal position. We're not going to have to make any drastic cuts."

But under a "worst-case scenario" outlined by Governor Janet Mills, the state could see a 17 percent decline in tax revenue over the next two years.

Without more federal aid, she says that could mean cuts for education, public safety and health care.