Government

Iowa's budget should balance, Reynolds says

Projections on track, governor says

Iowa Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds speaks during a 50th anniversary reception in Linn Hall at Kirkwood Community College in southwest, Iowa, on Thursday, May 19, 2016. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
Iowa Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds speaks during a 50th anniversary reception in Linn Hall at Kirkwood Community College in southwest, Iowa, on Thursday, May 19, 2016. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

WEST DES MOINES — Iowa’s checkbook should balance and not need further adjustments when the state closes the books on its fiscal year June 30, Gov. Kim Reynolds said Tuesday.

A year ago the state borrowed $13 million to balance the budget at the close of the fiscal year. That was in addition to $131 million in adjustments made during a volatile budget year.

Reynolds said during her weekly news conference Tuesday that it appears no such last-minute adjustments will be required this year.

“Last year it was so volatile. We saw great fluctuations right up until the last day,” Reynolds said. “But right now, we’re on target to meet our projections.”

In March, the state made $35.5 million in midyear budget reductions. The state’s public universities bore the brunt of those reductions.

Also Tuesday, Reynolds declined to weigh in on the state transportation department’s proposal to close 11 interstate rest areas and 16 parking-only sites over several years.

Reynolds said the public comment period is open, after which IDOT will make a recommendation.

“We have a board, the Department of Transportation Commission that makes those decisions, and they represent Iowans from all over the state,” Reynolds said. “They’ve put the time in. So we’ll wait and see what the comment period brings forth and then how they move forward with that.”

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Truck drivers have in the past expressed concern that reducing the number of rest areas would limit parking for drivers making long trips.

IDOT’s proposal is projected to save $30 million over two decades and would point drivers toward expanded public parking elsewhere or to commercial truck stops.

l Comments: (515) 422-9061; erin.murphy@lee.net

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