Thursday, December 16, 2010

McDonnell Announces $191 Million in Budget Cuts and Savings

Governor Bob McDonnell announced today a number of cuts, savings and re-prioritizations that will be part of his formal budget amendments on Friday. Cumulatively all of the Governor's actions will save and then reallocate $191 million in taxpayer dollars.  The full package of all items will be unveiled on Friday. 
Among the decisions the governor previewed today are his call for the elimination of state funding for public broadcasting by the conclusion of FY 2013, saving $2 million by the end of FY 2012 and $4 million by the conclusion of FY 2013. The governor further announced that due to the Commonwealth wisely taking advantage of historically low interest rates and other credit enhancements, we will capture $24 million in savings from the recent issuance of Virginia College Building Authority and Virginia Public Building Authority bonds. The governor will also leave open multiple state positions which are currently vacant, and continue strict restrictions on discretionary spending, travel and hiring by state agencies. All of these savings are in line with the recommendations made by the Governor's Commission on Government Reform and Restructuring.
Here are some highlights of the plan:
  • End taxpayer funding of public broadcasting in the Commonwealth, saving: $2 million in FY 2012; $4 million by end of FY 2013
  • Capture savings in the Treasury Board from recent bond issuances taking advantage of historically low interest rates, saving: $24 million
  • Capture savings from decline in check volume, reduce costs of electronic communications, renegotiate banking services contracts, all in Treasury, saving: $297,000
  • Eliminate four vacant positions in Department of Forestry, saving: $420,000
  • Continue agency-wide restrictions in the Department of Health on discretionary spending, travel and hiring, saving: $1.4 million
  • Expand Medicaid managed care programs, saving: $3.5 million
  • Capture vacancy savings across Department of Conservation and Recreation, saving: $250,000
  • Administrative savings at Department of Social Services, saving: $1 million
Seems like a great start to me.

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