JEFFERSON CITY • Gov. Jay Nixon said Tuesday he will withhold $35.1 million from the education budget due to declining lottery and riverboat gaming revenue.
The announcement marks the second time Nixon has withheld money from the current fiscal year’s education budget since April. The fiscal year ends June 30.
“Funding shortfalls from sources dedicated for education require that I take the appropriate action to keep our state on a fiscally responsible path that reflects our commitment to Missouri’s students,” Nixon said in a news release today.
In January, Nixon requested $44.1 million in the supplement to the fiscal year 2014 budget because of shrinking revenue from riverboat gambling and the lottery. Lawmakers appropriated only $22 million in April.
As a result, Nixon announced a $22 million withholding from the education budget — $3.2 million from public higher education institutions and $15.6 million from the Foundation Formula, which funds public K-12 schools.
This time around, he will withhold $10.5 million from four-year higher education institutions and $24.6 million from the Foundation Formula.
The continued decline of these revenue streams has Nixon concerned about the fiscal year 2015 projections, especially because he feels the Legislature was overly optimistic about riverboat gambling revenue.
“We will continue to monitor these funding sources for the upcoming 2015 Fiscal Year,” Nixon said. “We remain concerned about the Legislature’s optimistic riverboat gaming revenue assumptions, assumptions which ignore trends and place schools at continued risk.”