(Albany, NY) – Demonstrating their commitment to developing a responsible budget, the Senate Majority Conference announced the formation of a new bipartisan task force on government efficiency. Chaired by Deputy Senate Majority Leader Jeff Klein, the eleven-member task force will conduct a statewide investigation into the spending practices of state agencies and operations to uncover areas of administrative inefficiencies and government waste.
Senator Diane J. Savino was named to the task force, along with Senators Darrel Aubertine, Brian X. Foley, Craig Johnson, Betty Little, George Maziarz, Tom Morahan, Jose Serrano, Bill Stachowski, Andrea Stewart-Cousins, and Dave Valesky.
Senate Majority Conference Leader John L. Sampson said, “Years of fiscal irresponsibility have pushed our state to the brink of fiscal disaster. We will find the waste, and cut the fat to provide overburdened families with the tax relief they deserve. Driven by runaway spending practices, New York has plummeted down a steep hill toward an economy we can no longer afford. By making government more efficient and effective, we can lower costs, lower taxes, attract business and create jobs.
“Now more than ever, my goal is to protect the people's money. Together, my colleagues and I will take a good hard look at state agencies and examine spending at all levels – whether it’s excessive overtime costs or wasteful and redundant administrative practices – in an effort to find fresh ways to get New York State's fiscal house in order. I look forward to working with my colleagues, on both sides of the aisle, as we seek solutions to make government work more effectively and efficiently for all New Yorkers,” said Deputy Senate Majority Leader Jeffrey D. Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester).
Earlier this year, Senator Klein unveiled a report uncovering massive inefficiencies in spending at the state university system (SUNY). Last month, both Senators Savino and Klein issued a similar report on the NYS Department of Correctional Services (DOCS).
The task force will work to uncover inefficient government spending and develop solutions to put taxpayer dollars to better use, in an effort to help close the substantial state budget shortfall in Governor Paterson’s proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2010-2011. By rooting out inefficiency, this special Task Force on Government Efficiency will recommend to the Senate ways to control government spending at all state agencies. This in turn will allow New York State to cut wasteful spending and provide vital tax relief statewide.
“Before slashing vital services, we must first ensure that government is using its resources appropriately. With programs that service our seniors and children under threat, it is crucial that we first tackle waste and inefficiency,” said Senator Diane Savino (D-Staten Island).