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By Prashant Gopal
California is going to Washington, D.C., to ask for $7 billion to cover its budget shortfall. Otherwise it won't be able to pay for its teachers, cops, firemen, and other essential services. Unfortunately, California won't be alone. A number of other states are experiencing a huge dive in tax revenue and could be going cap in hand to Uncle Sam alarmingly soon. How bad could it get? The potential cost for all the 31 states facing both major and minor shortfalls could be as much as $53.4 billion.
The data in this slide show is based on a study by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities released at the end of September and shows the states that have seen the biggest shortfalls in tax revenue in their fiscal 2009 budgets.
Editor's note: The budget gaps include the shortfalls before the budget was adopted, along with any additional midyear gaps.
Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities