Legislature ends after approving new budget


HELENA (AP) - The Montana Legislature adjourned Saturday night, after making last-minute budget adjustments to complete its four-month-long struggle to erase a $230 million deficit.

The final day was marked by approval of a $6.3 billion two-year budget that was balanced with a combination of tax increases, spending cuts and tapping one-time sources of money.

The budget was praised by supporters as a worthy achievement in light of the state's financial woes and condemned by critics as an inadequate plan laced with temporary fixes that will leave the next Legislature in the same budget squeez...

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