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Governor Presents Budget Rewrite 

Governor Baldacci put forward Wednesday changes to his budget he says will ease the impact of cuts that had been proposed to close the state budget gap. He now wants to restore nearly 79-million dollars in cuts, most of it in the areas of health and human services, and education.The money comes in part from a slightly improved state revenue projection and a change to the Medicare program that delivered extra federal dollars to the state.The governor’s budget revisions include restoring 37-million dollars in cuts that had been proposed in health and human services, which includes increased support for nursing homes, assisted living facilities and home-based care.”On 24-hour-a-day care, on 7-day-a-week operations, I mean that really is life and death. People say, why did you pick this area more than another, I say, look, all these areas are all important. But these are life and death issues,” Baldacci says.The revisions also include restoring 20-million dollars to K-through-12 education for fiscal year 2011, and eight million dollars to higher education.With the adjusted funding, the state budget gap now stands at 360-million dollars, down from 438-million.For more information about the governor’s changes, visithttp://www.maine.gov/budget/budgetinfo/2010supplemental.htm