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Two-thirds of stimulus money will cover state tax loses

About two-thirds of the state government's federal economic stimulus money is being used to cover a record drop in state tax collections.

The Legislative Fiscal Bureau says Madison is getting almost $3.5 billion from the Obama stimulus package over the next three years.

And about $2.2 billion is being applied to the state's deficit.

The fiscal bureau says health programs like Medicaid are getting $1.25 billion stimulus. Schools are getting just more than $1.1 billion.

And $426 million is going to highways and other transportation.

Republican lawmakers warn that using the one-time stimulus money for ongoing programs will it harder to balance the next state budget in 2011, which is already about $2 billion in the hole.