Connecticut Gov. M. Jodi Rell last week announced that the state will seek spending cuts and hiring freezes as opposed to tax hikes to help address a projected $145 million deficit in the $18.4 billion fiscal 2009 budget, which began July 1.

The gap is due in part to underperforming tax revenues. The state budget office now expects sales-tax receipts to be $81.5 million less than previously anticipated, while personal income tax receipts could drop by $56.4 million for the current year. Officials now project anticipated business and real estate tax revenue to decrease by $78.9 million and $63.2 million, respectively. Gaming revenue from tribal casinos are expected to drop by $37.6 million.

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