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Ailing Budget? Try Medical Marijuana

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Governor Bill Ritter has just a few more months in office before his replacement (John Hickenlooper, Dan Maes, or Tom Tancredo) will have to pick up where he leaves off. And judging by Monday’s headlines, it’s not a great time to be governor. Ritter has announced a delay in hiring for certain state jobs and a transfer of tens of millions in cash reserves to balance yet another budget shortfall, according to the Denver Business Journal. Ritter wants to cut $1.3 million from the Department of Corrections, reducing utility payments, some parolee services, and a program that provides clothing to offenders upon their release. The plan doesn’t incorporate furloughs already taken by state workers this fiscal year, and so far no additional unpaid days off have been scheduled, points out 7News. The budget forecast might be even bleaker if it wasn’t for medical-marijuana registrations. Ritter will use money from the registrations to help the state meet its $60 million shortfall, notes Colorado Springs’ Gazette.

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