Lawmakers question budget plan

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CARSON CITY, Nev.—Skeptical Nevada legislators barraged Gov. Jim Gibbons’ top aides on Thursday with questions about the governor’s $6.2 billion, two-year state spending plan that calls for big cuts in funding for public education and other government programs and services.The lawmakers repeatedly demanded more details from Gibbons’ budget chief, Andrew Clinger, and his chief of staff, Josh Hicks, at the first of several review meetings scheduled in advance of the Feb. 2 start of the 2009 legislative session.

Democratic and Republican lawmakers alike joined in the questioning about the spending plan, which is more than $2 billion short of what’s needed to maintain government services at current levels and handle increased demand. Gibbons has said repeatedly that in most cases he won’t support tax increases that would meet that need without the deep cuts he has proposed.

http://www.mercurynews.com/breakingnews/ci_11529093?nclick_check=1

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