NPR—Cuts Upon Cuts Leave Georgia With ‘Budget Fatigue’

Posted by Kendall Harmon

[KATHY] LOHR: During the State of the State address, the governor said he would eliminate some 14,000 vacant jobs. He's also calling for state agencies to reduce budgets by an average of 7 percent. That means cuts to higher education, Medicaid and services for the elderly. But Deal says there's no other way.

Mr. [NATHAN] DEAL: Our state's fortunes do not rise or fall on the size of state government.

LOHR: Georgia has been cutting its budget for years. Since 2009, the size of the budget has shrunk by 15 percent.

Alan Essig with the Georgia Budget and Policy Institute says that's caused a kind of budget fatigue here.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyTaxesThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--Politics in GeneralState Government

2 Comments
Posted January 31, 2011 at 6:04 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Sick & Tired of Nuance wrote:

So, they were able to cut their budget by a whopping 15% in a year and the sky has not fallen.  What does that mean?  It means that there was 15% excessive spending in the first place!  Wants were confused with needs.  People NEED police protection, courts, and prisons to be safe.  Maslow’s heirarchy of needs bottom line (above things like breathing, sleeping, and eating) is security.  That’s where government does it’s best work.  As government climbs the heirarchy, it becomes worse and worse at doing it’s job and it becomes more and more expensive. 

So, they have cut 15% and the State of Georgia hasn’t imploded.  Grass still grows, birds still sing, and millions of people go about their daily lives.  All this, and they still have welfare, public schools, libraries, fire and police protection, etc.  What I find deplorable is the talk of cutting government budgets by laying off people that are actually working to do things like build bridges, teach kids, guard prisoners….while continuing to pay people NOT TO WORK.  In my opinion, the first line of cuts should be mid-level management.  The second line of cuts should be streamlining and consolidating departments (and laying off upper management).  The third line of cuts should be things like student aid, grants, etc.  The fourth line of cuts should be for any support for adults capable of working but that are not working…welfare.  Then, and only then, should they begin to cut things like libraries, state parks, etc. 

Police are essential personnel to keep us safe.  Road repair is essential to commerce.  What is welfare for able-bodied people essential for?  Sorry, assuaging the conscience of Liberal “do-gooders” that don’t give to charity themselves but feel relief for their parsimony by imposing taxes on everyone else to pay for their “Great Society” and “War on Poverty” hubristic dreams falls into the category of WANTS not NEEDS. 

(BTW, “hubristic” because a very wise man once told us that, “the poor will always be with you”, and because history has born out the truth of those words.)

A funny thing happened on the way to the Budget Crisis….

January 31, 10:22 am | [comment link]
2. Ralph wrote:

GA has chronically underfunded education and health care, but…

A couple of years ago, staff at the Medical College of Georgia (and I think, the rest of the University System) were forced to take involuntary furloughs. At the same time, upper-level administrators were getting hefty salary increases.
http://chronicle.augusta.com/news/metro/2010-05-02/salaries-mcg-administrators-soar-5-years

More recently, the campus is changing its name at an estimated cost of several million dollars.
http://chronicle.augusta.com/news/health/2010-09-08/board-endorses-mcg-name-change

The UGA football coach’s salary is right around $3 million.

And Medicaid?
http://www.georgiawatch.org/2011/01/27/georgia-health-advocates-concerned-about-potential-health-care-cutbacks/

At the same time, the financially-challenged Diocese of Georgia plans a canonical change at the upcoming convention, requiring parishes to provide a mandatory tithe of budget to the diocese.

They also think that they can mount a substantial fundraising campaign.
http://georgia.anglican.org/?p=1409

Moreover “Integrity” of Georgia reports that the bishop, who voted for the Glasspool “ordination-consecration” has formed a secret committee to examine how to change the diocese’s ethics canon that limits clergy sexual activity to “marriage between a man and woman” or abstinence. That should really encourage conservative Georgians to give.
http://www.integrityga.org/

Storm clouds are gathering in that state.

January 31, 5:45 pm | [comment link]
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