Some agencies to lose 75 percent of funding by 2011, yet AAA rating intact (Audio)

As the South Carolina House takes up the state budget today, it marks the beginning of a busy period of debate. The Senate’s budget debate will follow shortly thereafter and then the fight will be between a small group of members from each chamber who will decide how each agency is cut.  And cuts are expected as budget writers encounter a more desperate time in state government.
Horry County Senator Yancey McGill expects that the Senate will be hard at work on the budget within two weeks. As a member of the Senate Finance Committee, the Williamsburg County Democrat oversees the budgets of 26 state agencies. He began budget hearings with agencies last week.
McGill says an amazing thing for which South Carolinians should be proud is a AAA credit rating. The state is one of only eight states which have maintained the top rating during the recession.
McGill says it’s a matter of the state not spending more money than it has, something that the state of California has not been able to do. He says it should be some consolation when some agencies will have cut out up to three-fourths of their budgets over a year’s time by this time next year.
(McGill on state budget, AAA rating  Mp3  1:54)
McGill on AAA credit rating
McGill says that he knows that current state lawmakers will do what it takes to maintain the state’s A AA credit rating.