Colorado budget crisis worst since Depression |

Colorado budget crisis worst since Depression

Lynn Bartels, Jessica Fender and John Ingold
The Denver Post
Denver, CO Colorado

DENVER, Colorado – Colorado lawmakers who have already balanced a budget shortfall of $1.4 billion now must come up with an additional $384 million in cuts, marking this as the worst downturn for state government since at least the Great Depression.

Worse than earlier this decade, when the state was forced to cut $1 billion and made national news after lawmakers decided to end Medicaid benefits for legal immigrants, including Russians who had survived World War II.

Worse than in the 1980s, when a crisis in the oil industry, real estate and savings-and-loan institutions created economic havoc.

Even in a state used to cycles of boom and bust, the current malaise is unprecedented.

“Here we are again, but this is just so much worse,” said Todd Saliman, a former Joint Budget Committee member and the budget director for Democratic Gov. Bill Ritter.

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