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Delaware Governor: Jack Markell

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Keeping Commitments, Cutting Costs

Written on: July 1st, 2010 in Effective & Efficient Government

This morning, the General Assembly passed and I signed a balanced budget – on time – that will help shape our state’s future and get people back to work.

The budget funds fewer state positions, while meeting increasing demands for government services like education, healthcare and public safety. The Fiscal Year 2011 Budget is over $50 million less than the budget passed two years ago. We will be implementing new efficiencies while keeping our core commitments to education, public safety, the health of our environment and our quality of life.

Keeping Commitments & Investing in the Future

With this budget, we are:

  • Listening to StudentsInvesting in our schools, to better prepare our children so they can graduate ready to succeed in work or college. To keep class sizes stable, it invests in new teachers. To keep the focus on the classroom, it reduces funding for administrative costs.
  • Protecting public safety and our most vulnerable citizens.
  • Investing in efforts to improve our environment and our quality of life.
  • Working to get people to work that need jobs and making clear how important it is that Delaware be a great place to start and grow a business.

Cutting the Ribbon for Testing Machines Inc.

Creating Savings for Taxpayers

We worked together to ensure that we did not have to follow other states into raiding our rainy day fund and looked instead for common-sense ways to cut some costs:

  • We slashed the number of our state vehicles. We renegotiated leases on state buildings to drive down costs and moved out of some space entirely.
  • We cut printing and computer costs through consolidation.
  • We saved millions of dollars by cutting our energy costs.
  • We restructured and reorganized some divisions to create greater efficiency and effectiveness.

Compared to 2010, this year’s budget has over 520 fewer state employees meeting even greater demands on state service. Compared to the 2009 budget, we have eliminated over 1,000 positions and are spending $50M less in our operating budget.

Our hard work last year did make some things easier this year. All three bond rating agencies recognized our commitment to fiscal responsibility and sound budgeting for 2010, by reaffirming our Triple-A bond rating. This recognition gave us the opportunity to cut an additional $16 million in costs for taxpayers.

Across Branches, Across Parties

Governor Reads with StudentsBecause of a bill we signed last year to create more open government, the votes and debates on this budget were fully open to the public. The citizens that attended the meetings had a chance to see branches of government work together, across party lines, focused on improving our state’s future.  It was a bipartisan vote to pass this budget, as it was a budget built by months of bipartisan effort and compromise.

At the end of the day, that cooperation truly is the Delaware difference and that’s how, together, we’re moving Delaware forward.

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Have a Great Fourth of July!

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