Coutinho: Preparing for more revenue/budget bad news

TRENTON – While the Treasury Department’s revenue figures won’t be released until Wednesday morning, one Assembly Budget Committee member said this afternoon he “wouldn’t be surprised” if the figures are several hundred million dollars short of expectations.

“Given the information that’s been made available, I would not be shocked if tomorrow, as a budget committee member, we learn there’s a $500 million shortfall this year,” Assemblyman Albert Coutinho (D-28) of Newark, said Tuesday.

He added that such a shortfall would be on pace to result in a $1 billion shortfall over the course of the 2013 fiscal year.  

“There’s a lot of work to get done,” he said. “Everyone should come to the table with an open mind.”

Just a week ago, the Treasury Department said April’s revenue figures are $230 million short year to date and some $184 million short what they had project for the month of April.

The Assembly Budget Committee will hold two hearings Wednesday after receiving first updated revenue figures from the Office of Legislative Services and then from Treasury.

Then on Thursday the Senate Budget Committee will hold two hearings as well regarding the updated projections.

Coutinho: Preparing for more revenue/budget bad news