It’s a fairly commonplace debate within federal, state and local government. Majority lawmakers claim they have cut as much as possible from state budgets, and the minority and frustrated taxpayers argue there has got to be more fat that can be reasonably trimmed.
At least twice during his first seven months in office, while grappling with an inherited budget crisis, Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy has given the “you didn’t cut enough” crowd reason to be skeptical.
The first time occurred in May, when Malloy, whose administration at the time was seeking $2 billion worth of union concessions, released his “Plan B” budget to show the impact on government and services should there be no employee givebacks. Although many of the cuts might have indeed proved disastrous for the state, some begged the question, “Why weren’t these in the governor’s ‘Plan A’ budget’?”
Then today fellow Hearst reporter Ken Dixon reported that Malloy is impressed with several cost-cutting ideas proposed by his commissioners in light of the unions’ failure to ratify a $1.6 billion concessions deal.
Although the givebacks may be salvaged and layoffs prevented, Malloy, according to Dixon, said, “There are still many good ideas in these plans.”
So again the question needs to be asked, where were these proposals earlier this year? Is a fiscal crisis just not enough to get folks in government to focus on finding real efficiencies? They need the unions to reject a concessions package, leaving the budget unbalanced, to really take a serious look at cutting costs?