AUGUSTA, Maine — Gov. John Baldacci on Thursday signed into law a supplemental state budget that lawmakers enacted earlier this week.
The emergency measure is designed to bridge a $166 million gap between projected revenue and spending through the end of the current fiscal year June 30. It won swift and overwhelming support in the House and Senate, with leaders from both parties praising the way they worked together.
Now, however, the Legislature takes on a bigger challenge as it shifts the focus to Baldacci’s proposed $6.1 billion budget for the two years starting July 1. Public hearings on that package, which seeks to close an even larger budget gap now estimated at more than $800 million, are scheduled to begin Feb. 9.