* Senate Republican Leader Bill Brady on Jak Tichenor’s program yesterday…
We think the governor was wise a while ago to ask for his agencies to look at six and a half percent adjustments in their budgets, efficiencies, that would provide hundreds of millions of dollars without touching healthcare or education or pension payments. […]
We’d like to see what his agencies came up with. […]
If you take the other agencies and if you take six and a half percent efficiencies, as he ordered, there could be over $800 million. Couple that with [$650 million] in natural revenue growth, that gives you a billion and a half dollars to reinvest in education, DCFS, make the pension payment.
He later said the $800 million figure excluded education, healthcare and pension cuts.
* Gov. Pritzker was asked last week about his order to state agencies to game out 6.5 percent cuts…
Part of the purpose of that memo, Hannah, was to make sure that we were surfacing the opportunities to make government more efficient. So we really forced the agency heads to think hard about what would you do in the event that we needed to make significant cuts.
There were many things that were recommended from each of the agencies. We chose from those things, the things that we thought were would not deteriorate the services that people get for our state, but that would make sure that we’re operating more efficiently. So that was really the purpose of that exercise. […]
Reporter: Will there have to be deeper cuts in other areas to balance the budget in 21 and increase spending in other areas… ?
Pritzker: Well, let’s start with the situation that I walked into when I became governor. The agencies of state government had been significantly hollowed out. And if you would talk to our state agency directors, they would tell you that they walked into situations where sometimes the basic functions of government required by law weren’t being performed, because of the hollowing out that has occurred. So, we’re in the process here of making government more efficient and effective with the dollars that we have, and making sure that we’re restoring services that people deserve.
* The Question: Should the governor’s office release the document containing the 6.5 percent agency spending reductions exercise? Make sure to explain your answer, please. Thanks.