Fiscal Cliff Stalemate Spurs Anxiety in States

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) _ A potential plunge over the federal “fiscal cliff” is causing anxiety for many state officials _ not only because of prospective federal funding cuts, but because of the confusion surrounding the ongoing stalemate in Washington.

The longer the White House and Congress remain at odds, the more difficult it becomes for governors and lawmakers who are trying to piece together their own budgets.

Many states depend on federal grants to help finance education, environmental and community programs that are on the chopping block. Their economies are powered by military bases and defense contractors that could get whacked. And their state income tax revenues could rise or fall as a direct result of federal tax hikes.

State budget leaders say they want a resolution sooner rather than later.

AP-WF-12-10-12 1838GMT<