Gov. John Engler and state lawmakers are meeting to decide how to deal with a multi-million dollar shortfall in next year's state budget.
State budget watchers say the state's general fund, which is described as the state's main checkbook, for the coming fiscal year is about $190 million in the red. That's on top of an estimated $400 million shortage this year.
The Michigan Constitution requires the state to have a balanced budget. Gov. Engler has vowed to leave the budget in order for the next governor, Democrat Jennifer Granholm. That means a solution must be reached before January first when the governor and dozens of lawmakers leave office.