State faces shortfall as a result of virus, 206 virus cases reported

Staff Writer

According to the Arkansas Department of Health, there are 206 cases of coronavirus, COVID-19, across the state.
There have been seven people recover and no deaths reported.
More than 20 cases have been reported in Cleburne County. Many of those cases are linked to a church where nearly three dozen people attended a children’s event.

Across the nation there are 46,485 cases and 591 deaths reported, as of Tuesday morning.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Monday that Arkansas faces a $353 million budget shortfall because of the economic fallout from the coronavirus outbreak.

Hutchinson announced the shortfall as he said the state was delaying its filing and payment deadline for individual income taxes from April 15 to July 15, mirroring a move by the federal government. The governor said most of the state's projected drop in revenue will come from that move, and officials had already expected $160 million less coming in because of the outbreak's impact on businesses.

“It is going to be a challenge for the next three months," Hutchinson said.

Hutchinson said he planned to call a special session of the legislature to address the shortfall. Legislative leaders said they expected the session to begin as soon as late this week.

Hutchinson is schedule to provide another virus update at 1:30 p.m. today.