St. Louis Public Radio News
11:57 am
Wed March 19, 2003

Mo. House Gives First Approval to New Budget

Jefferson City, Mo. – The Missouri House Tuesday night gave initial approval to a non-traditional budget. The plan sends lump sums to each department for the next fiscal year; but elected lawmakers don't determine which programs get cut under the plan. That decision is left up to department directors.

House Democrats say it avoids legislative responsibility, and may be unconstitutional. But Republicans said most government functions likely would continue. They say they've had no other choice but to present the budget this way because department heads haven't cooperated in offering ideas on where to cut.

The plan needs one more vote in the House before moving to the Senate.