BOSTON — A taxpayers watchdog groups says Massachusetts' budget shortfall could be as high as $1.5 billion, nearly twice what the administration is estimating.
The president of the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation told organizations that rely on state funding to "Brace yourselves for a new reality."
The foundation's projected shortfall assumes funding for programs considered discretionary, from public safety to aid to municipalities, stays level.
Gov. Charlie Baker's administration has projected a $768 million shortfall. Earlier this month he outlined more than $500 million in spending cuts to help close the gap. Has said he will not raise taxes.
Kristen Lepore, Baker's budget chief, tells The Boston Globe (http://bit.ly/1zewPHx ) that state spending is growing at almost twice the rate of tax revenue, which she calls "unsustainable."
Information from: The Boston Globe, http://www.bostonglobe.com