ST. PAUL -- A month ago Minnesota had a projected budget surplus of $1.5 billion. It's likely we're now facing a forecasted budget deficit.

Minnesota Management and Budget Commissioner Myron Fans says he's crunching the numbers and plans to release a new budget forecast early next month. He says by then the state should have received the federal funding that had already been passed by Congress.

Frans also announced a hiring freeze by the state government.

Effective immediately we will institute a hiring freeze on all executive branch decisions, during the freeze agencies may not fill vacant positions and no new positions may be created except for those related to our COVID-19 response.

Frans says, based on the Governor's previous executive orders, they've already had a reduction of one-third of open positions at the state level.

Several of the state's top leaders are also taking a pay cut.

Governor Walz and his Chief of Staff and all cabinet commissioners will take a 10 percent pay cut for the remainder of this year.

Frans has said previously that he would still encourage state lawmakers to pass a bonding bill yet this session as a way to help jump-start the state's economy.

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