Fiscal storm clouds loom as Baker readies budget proposal

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Charlie Baker_523632

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker speaks, Tuesday, July 11, 2017, during a rededication ceremony for the repaired New England Holocaust Memorial in Boston. One of the glass panes in the memorial was damaged by a vandal last month. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

BOSTON (AP) — Republican Gov. Charlie Baker is preparing to submit his latest state budget proposal to the Legislature amid signs of a looming economic slowdown and calls by some on Beacon Hill to raise taxes for education and other initiatives.

Massachusetts finished its last fiscal year with a more than $1 billion surplus. Most experts don’t see that happening again.

Baker will file his roughly $42 billion spending blueprint on Wednesday. The plan is based on a projection of 2.7 percent growth in tax revenues, a lower estimate than in the two previous years.

Many Democrats say additional revenues are needed to implement reforms to the state’s education funding formula.

Baker on Friday proposed an increase in the state excise tax on real estate transfers to help communities prepare for climate change.

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