Battling the State Budget 

Legislative budget writers settled down to business after the ranking Republicans on the Appropriations Committee backed off previous GOP criticism of how details of a new $65 million Medicaid shortfall were released by officials of Democratic Gov. John Baldacci’s administration. Rep. Sawin Millett, R-Waterford, and Sen. Richard Rosen, R-Bucksport, on Monday absolved Baldacci budget chief Ryan Low of withholding information and noted that any delay in making the shortfall disclosure to lawmakers was at least partially due to legislative scheduling. Not all Republicans, however, seemed satisfied. Majority Democrats on the committee, as well as Low and Human Services Commissioner Brenda Harvey, let the comments by Millett and Rosen go by with little reaction.