OFM projects budget cash deficit

By JASON MERCIER  | 
Aug 4, 2020
BLOG

The Office of Financial Management (OFM) is projecting a budget cash deficit starting in August and running the rest of the Fiscal Year. Under state law, the Governor is required to issue across the board budget cuts if a cash deficit is projected unless the legislature has acted to liquidate the deficit. Here is OFM’s current general fund cash deficit projection:

According to RCW 43.88.110(7):

“If at any time during the fiscal period the governor projects a cash deficit in a particular fund or account as defined by RCW 43.88.050, the governor shall make across-the-board reductions in allotments for that particular fund or account so as to prevent a cash deficit, unless the legislature has directed the liquidation of the cash deficit over one or more fiscal periods.”

Here is what Governor Gregoire did in 2010 when complying with this same legal requirement:

“ . . . WHEREAS, the anticipated revenues combined with the beginning cash balance of the general fund are insufficient to meet anticipated expenditures from this fund for the remainder of the current fiscal period; and . . .

WHEREAS, state law authorizes and directs the Governor to implement across-the-board reductions of allotments of appropriations to avoid a projected cash deficit . . .

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Christine O. Gregoire, Governor of the state of Washington, pursuant to chapter 43.88 RCW do hereby order: The allotment of each appropriation from the State General Fund will be reduced effective October 1, 2010, by an amount necessary to avoid a cash deficit in the State General Fund.”

With the state’s budget office projecting a budget cash deficit, it is time for the Governor to either comply with the law or call a special session and allow the legislature to act.

Additional Information
Lawmakers continue to call for a special session