The fiscal cliff is officially gone as the Revenue Estimating Conference recognized $500 million in revenue that will be used to shield TOPS, public colleges and most state agencies from cuts after July 1st. Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne led the meeting, one day after the governor signed a new sales tax bill into law.

“It is obviously necessary for us to recognize session action in order to process the budget and go forward, which is why we call this meeting as quickly as we have.”

Most of the new revenue comes from the legislature’s decision to renew nearly half of an expiring one-cent sales tax. The Revenue Estimating Panel heard from the state’s legislative economist and then Dardenne called for a vote to recognize the money…

“The objection is that if that motion passes and that revenue is recognized.”