Gov. Bill Haslam, who is offering up his first state budget proposal Monday, said he felt he had to make some tough calls when drafting next year’s multi-billion dollar spending plan — and the decisions won’t get easier.
“I’m encouraged about where we are, but none of us should kid ourselves to think that we’re out of the woods and there will be no more hard decisions.”
The state will have to climb its way out of a $1.4 billion hole this year, he said during a press briefing.
“While this is a very difficult budget, I want to make clear that Tennessee, relatively, is in pretty good shape,” he continued, saying the state has low long-term liabilities, including obligations to pensioners.
Haslam is expected to deliver his first State of the State address tonight, which will be aired live online here.
The governor’s speech will be before a joint session of the General Assembly at 6 p.m.