State senators return to Lincoln for a special session beginning Wednesday afternoon. Governor Dave Heineman is proposing widespread cuts to deal with a projected $334 million shortfall. The governor proposes an across-the-board cut of 2.5 percent at most agencies in the current fiscal year and a 5 percent reduction next year. Excluded from the across-the-board cuts are 24-hour care faciliteis, the Department of Health and Human Services child protection and safety program, special education, the State Patrol and Department of Corrections.
Governor Heineman also proposes cancelling an increase in state aid for schools in 2010-2011. He would like to adjust payment levels for Medicaid and other providers. Governor Heineman also proposes some transfers from several budget lines to the general fund. The governor says that state agencies have saved $65 million from the previous budget year.