- Associated Press - Friday, May 13, 2016

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Nebraska state government revenue has fallen far short of estimates in the current fiscal year, suggesting that the state could face budget troubles in 2017.

A report released Friday shows the state is $71 million behind what was projected for the current fiscal year, which ends on June 30. Revenue was nearly 10 percent below estimates in the crucial month of April, typically the biggest month of the year.

Sen. Heath Mello, the Appropriations Committee chairman, says Nebraska is well positioned to handle volatility because of its cash reserve. But he warns the state may face “very difficult decisions” as agencies prepare budget requests.

Renee Fry of the OpenSky Policy Institute says the state’s projected $234 million shortfall is likely to grow if tax receipts remain below what was expected.

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