Scales of Department of Justice are not balanced budget-wise

By on Friday, March 26th, 2021 in Columbia Basin News More Top Stories

HEPPNER – Unlike the U.S., Oregon is required by law to operate with a balanced budget. While lawmakers are working on the budget for the next biennium, Rep. Greg Smith (R-Heppner) said they also must pay attention to the departments who have not lived within their means under the current budget.

“The Department of Justice, that handles the state’s litigation and protects us, they’ve mismanaged their budget and as of right now they lack adequate funding to get through the rest of the biennium,” Smith said. “When we get towards the end of the fiscal year, we’re going to have to look at those departments to see how we can backfill their budgets.”

The fiscal year ends June 30. The Heppner Republican is the vice co-chairman of the Joint Ways and Means Committee.