ND legislators speculate Dalrymple will call special session

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Bismarck, N.D. On top of the billion dollar shortfall North Dakota's already facing, the state is now dealing with another budget crunch.

Tax projections from an updated revenue forecast show the state is missing projections by $100 million through June.

July 12, Governor Jack Dalrymple will hold a press conference addressing the budget issue.

While we don't the specifics of what he'll say, many lawmakers think he'll bring them back to Bismarck.

To deal with a budget crunch, Dalrymple can dip into the rainy day fund, issue an allotment or call a special session. The session is the only option he's not yet tried.

"We've been hearing rumors that the Moody's forecast was going to come in and it was going to be down even more than what we had anticipated, so I guess we were expecting that something like this would happen," says Rep. Patrick Hatlestad, R-Williston.

Should Dalrymple call for a session, lawmakers from both sides of the aisle say they want to shield human services from cuts as much as possible.

"We don't want to put those who need service most in difficulties. So human services I think this time will be, and again it's a personal thing, will be protected somewhat," says Hatlestad.

"I think any cuts that we have, across the board that are going to impact those needs, are going to hurt us even deeper in the long run," says Erin Oban, D-Bismarck.

Oban and other Democrats called for a special session in the spring in order to make strategic cuts instead of an allotment.

"When a family is faced with cutting their budgets, they don't just cut everything across the board. They find places where they can prioritize their needs and get rid of some of those wants that we just don't have the money to fund right now," said Oban.

Oban says Democrats also plan to try to protect property tax relief.

We'll have full coverage of Dalrymple's official announcement tomorrow at 2:30 p.m.