a message from bill brady

I received this message from Bill Brady, Republican for Governor in Illinois. Bill writes about managed spending and state agencies holding back 10% of their budgets in reserve.

Here is what Bill wrote:

The fiscal 2009 deficit, which stood at $4.2 billion, will be reduced to $2.3 billion in the new fiscal year through revenues from the federal stimulus package, $300 million from dedicated funds and $600 million from a less than perfect bond refinancing scheme.

I believe we can manage that budget, if the administration holds the line on spending, while we undertake a serious and overdue review of the entire revenue and spending priorities of government today.

Those agencies that were fully funded at last year's levels should hold back 10 percent of their budgets in reserve. Those services that were funded at 50 percent should limit their spending over the next six months to 90 percent of their appropriation last year.

There will be some sacrifice but that managed spending will allow government to continue to function and serve our most vulnerable populations with fewer layoffs, fewer closings and fewer people left without assistance than what the Governor has been threatening.

Governor Quinn should come back to the General Assembly in the fall with a supplemental budget that recognizes the savings realized through efficiencies, management and prioritization and that uses those savings to fund needed services in other areas of government.

We also need to reform our spending. Let's start by reining in spending with a comprehensive look at how and where Illinois spends your tax dollars. Let's look at reforming our Medicaid program, where Illinois has lagged behind other states by not instituting a managed care system that reduces costs and increases access to quality health care. Let's refinance our debt with a bonding system that spreads the lower cost over time without taking a two-year payment-free holiday that pushes another $600 million on to our children and grandchildren.

Illinois is at a crossroads, our task difficult, and our choices not easy. But a tax increase that takes billions of dollars out of our economy and hands it to a deep-rooted bureaucracy resistant to change is not the answer.

We can do better, and we must do better for the future of Illinois.

Remember State Senate Republicans have called for spending reforms and Bill's debt refinancing plan makes good sense.

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