Back in June, Idaho Gov. Butch Otter asked all agencies to identify how much money they get from the federal government and calculate how they would accommodate a 20-percent reduction in those funds in case the federal government goes over the fiscal cliff.
The 20 percent number was considered high at the time by many. He set a deadline of August for the agencies to report back.
Since then Otter has not issued a report or given us any idea what he found out from this exercise. I asked his office what he learned and how that is going to affect the state and programs if Congress is unable to reach an agreement to prevent the $110 billion in mandatory budget cuts that would go into effect Tuesday.
Communication Director Mark Warbis e-mailed me this morning to say Otter is waiting for what President Barack Obama’s Office of Management and Budget will tell the states about where and by how much federal funding will be most immediately reduced.
“We will have to assess that on an agency-by-agency basis if and when it occurs,” Warbis said. “We are watching it closely, but there are simply too many variables and too much uncertainty to have a clear idea yet of what actions would be required, if any.”