The Wyoming Consensus Revenue Estimating Group - called CREG - released its latest revenue forecast Monday. The group first updated Governor Matt Mead in January when it predicted lowered forecasts for natural gas prices.
Since natural gas is the single largest source of revenue for the state, Governor Mead asked Wyoming's agencies to prepare budget cuts of up to 8%. This is in light of lowered estimates for natural gas and coal production.
Mead says the group's report shows a need to restrain spending and when spending, to do it cautiously. He also said that it demonstrates the vital role minerals play in Wyoming's economy. Without reducing spending, the state could soon outspend its revenue, he said.
Although the estimated revenue for fiscal years 2013 and 2013 are up by $85 million from January, that figure is still more than $30 million less than forecast last year.
Governor Mead also said now is a good time to have the discussion about whether we want to build the state's savings at the same rate as we did during the boom times or pay for one-time big ticket projects.