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State budget shortfall projected at $2.2 billion

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Gov. Scott Walker’s administration says Wisconsin faces a $2.2 billion budget shortfall by mid-2017, a problem that will have to be tackled by the Republican-controlled Legislature next year as Walker is building his resume for a potential presidential run.

The estimate released Thursday by the state Department of Administration is required under the law. It takes into account spending requests made by state agencies for the next two years.

The figures will be further refined by the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau in January. Walker will release his two-year state budget proposal either in late January or February.

Walker won re-election on the promise of cutting income and property taxes, a pledge that will be more difficult to achieve given the looming shortfall.

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