Fletcher Says State Will Have Extra $279 Million

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Gov. Ernie Fletcher is counting on an extra $279 million flowing into the state coffers this year, an unexpected pool he said could pay for various things ranging from college tuition programs to a general tax cut.

Fletcher held a press conference at the Capitol Thursday to highlight the state's first quarter revenue collections of about $2 billion, a 3.6 percent increase from last year at this time. The revenue report also projected Kentucky's general fund would take in $278.9 million more than previously projected.

"This is good news for Kentucky," Fletcher said.

Earlier this year, the General Assembly approved an $18.1 billion two-year budget, but Fletcher followed with about $370 million in cuts to various projects. Fletcher slashed millions of dollars worth of projects from the budget last spring, including numerous ones at state universities.

Now, Fletcher said some of the anticipated extra revenue could go to restoring some of those projects. The legislature is schedule to return to the Capitol in early 2007.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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