DIVISION OF THE BUDGET
DAVID A. PATERSON, GOVERNOR
October 31, 2008 CONTACT: Jeffrey Gordon
GOVERNOR PATERSON ANNOUNCES RELEASE OF STATE AGENCY CORE MISSION BUDGETING REPORTS
Reports Provide Comprehensive Inventory of All State Programs
Will Provide Guidance to Policymakers as They Seek to Make Targeted, Surgical Spending Reductions in the State Budget
Governor David A. Paterson today announced the release of core mission budgeting reports from the State’s executive agencies. The reports provide detailed budget information on every individual State program and will help policymakers better prioritize State spending during the State’s current fiscal crisis and in the years to come.
“For years, State government spending has increased at an exponential rate without a fundamental reevaluation of how taxpayer money is being spent,” said Governor Paterson. “In our current fiscal crisis, we simply cannot continue this kind of budgetary inertia. We must separate the critical functions of State government from those we can no longer afford, in order to help direct our limited resources to our highest priority initiatives in a time of fiscal crisis.”
In August, Governor Paterson directed every State agency commissioner to create a comprehensive inventory of all of the programs that they administer, including the dollars spent on and employees dedicated to each activity. He further charged commissioners to designate whether they believe each program had a high, medium, or low relation to the agency’s core mission. The reports are available publicly on the Division of the Budget’s website.
Budget Director Laura Anglin said the designation of a program as having a high, medium, or low relation to an agency’s core mission simply represents policy advice from commissioners to Governor Paterson.
“Programs designated as having a low relation to an agency’s core mission may still be worthy initiatives with laudable goals,” Anglin said. “But in this time of unprecedented fiscal challenge, even many worthy programs will experience reductions in funding. Closing the State’s substantial budget deficits will require many difficult decisions.”
Anglin noted that there may be many different interpretations of how various programs should be characterized. Moreover, they do not indicate what actions will ultimately be taken in Governor Paterson’s Executive Budget proposal to the Legislature. She said those decisions will be made after a thoughtful, thorough, and deliberative budget development process.