What Is the Extent of the Governor’s Authority to Cut Funds Appropriated by the General Assembly?

Back • Publication Date: June 1st, 2004

Authors: Sara Cooper Berkson, Yale Law School

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In January 2003, the Governor announced $17 million in “forced lapses” to various budget accounts, and the Office of Policy and Management “held back” millions more. The Office of Policy and Management also refused to release appropriated funding in the form of grants to municipalities across the state. This report addresses the authority the Governor has to make budget cuts that exceed his statutory budget modification authority, whether they be called “forced lapses,” “holdbacks” or simply non-payments. It includes a description of the relevant statutes as well as pertinent case law in the area.