Florida legislators have less money to spend this year

Florida Budget
Posted at 6:05 PM, Jan 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-19 18:05:00-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Florida legislators are going to have less money to spend in the coming year than they were planning on.

State economists met Tuesday to draw up new forecasts to predict how much the state will collect in taxes. The forecasts will be used by state legislators to draw up this year's budget.

Economists predict the state's main budget account will only grow 2.1 percent during the fiscal year that ends in June. Those forecasts estimate growth of 4.4 percent in the 2016-17 fiscal year.

These forecasts mean the state has about $400 million less to spend. Back in September, economists predicted an overall budget surplus of $635 million if legislators also increased spending on schools and health care.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott wants to cut taxes by $1 billion.