Here is how Gov. Andrew Cuomo can streamline state government and save taxpayers some real money.
Why should the cost of state government consistently go up each year? Try automatically adopting last year’s budget and spending levels. Real fiscal reform restricts any new spending below the rate of inflation.
Return to the old-fashion pay-as-you-go financial management. Implement pay-as-you-go budgeting, means testing for all government assistance programs, sunset provisions for agencies and programs that have completed their missions and end all member-item pork-barrel spending.
An honest budget has no fiscal gimmicks such as one-shot revenues, excessive bonding (whose short-term benefits are offset by usury interest payments several times their value) or hidden off-line expenses under quasi-independent agencies.
How many such agencies exist whose budgets are subject to limited oversight by both the state legislature and state comptroller? The budget should be written in the Kings English so ordinary citizens can understand what is going on.
Insist on an open budget process agency by agency. Afford the public, media and members of the legislature plenty of time to read the fine print line by line, page by page before adoption.