Bobby Jindal cuts spending in Lousiana and imposes accountability

Bobby and Supriya Jindal
Bobby and Supriya Jindal: no teleprompter needed

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Found this recent blog post over at Governor Bobby Jindal’s blog. (H/T The Maritime Sentry).

Previously, I had blogged about his refusal to take bailout funds, his defense of Rush Limbaugh on CNN, and his plans for education reform in Louisiana.

In the new post, he talks about cutting spending and imposing more reporting and accountability on the government departments:

Our budget will decrease by 9.8 percent compared to last year’s budget, including a 12.7 percent decrease in state funds… We have asked agencies and departments across state government to provide meaningful performance data, so that we can target underperforming and out-of-date programs while protecting high performing programs from severe reductions.

He outlines specific measures to deal with the economic downturn:

School funding based on performance

First, are calling on the Board of Regents to implement a new funding formula that will reform higher education spending. While the current formula too often rewards enrollment alone and results in duplication, a new formula should reward performance, and, for example, encourage schools to target specific programs that will provide degrees in high demand professions – aligning funding with our state’s economic needs.

Eliminate unnecessary government departments

Next, we will create a Commission on Streamlining Government, whose mission will be to examine agencies and departments throughout state government to ensure that their roles and missions are still relevant today.

Improve efficiency of civil service

Third, we will work to reduce the size of state government by implementing civil service reforms that encourage state workers to do their jobs well – not just to reach tenure.

Facilitate future spending cuts

Dedicated funds will have to be just as transparent as discretionary funds, and will sunset every four years beginning in 2010. We will change the current laws so that discretionary funds can be cut up to 10 percent, whereas currently they can only be cut 5 percent, and to remove the two year limit on cutting these funds.

Improve transparency and accountability in education spending

Finally, we will reform the current MFP funding process for our state’s K-12 schools. As the MFP funds are given to school district as a block grant, there is not enough accountability for how the funds are spent. We will require that beginning in FY11 districts must fully account for how these dollars are spent, and the Department of Education will develop an easy to use website allowing taxpayers to see how their hard-earned dollars are being spent.

The post goes on to discuss other initiatives, such as increasing economic growth. And that is when you read this startling statement:

The retention and expansion of jobs has been a top priority of this administration, and we will continue working to expand our economy in the coming months and years. In December, we were the only state in the nation to add jobs, and in January, we were the only state in the nation whose unemployment rate when down and not up.

Sigh. Shouldn’t we have elected Bobby Jindal instead of Mr. Teleprompter-Reader?

To find out more about Bobby Jindal, check out these links:

Interview with Rush Limbaugh (PDF)
The American Spectator: Hope Floats on the Bayou Bobby Jindal Saves Louisiana The Future of Conservatism (Isn’t Running for President)
The Weekly Standard: Another Winner from Winn Parish
The National Review: The Governor Is Right
The Wall Street Journal: Bayou Boy Wonder Want real hope and change? Try Louisiana

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