Governor Paterson Shows Us The Money
Now, If They Would Only Stop Spending It!
This week, Governor David A. Paterson launched a new website from his recently-created Office of Taxpayer Accountability. [Hmmm. Creating a new level of government to save money. An interesting concept. Must be part of the jobs-creation program.]
The website, Taxpayer.ny.gov , provides information on the State's efforts to cut spending, improve the efficiency of State agencies, save taxpayer dollars and provide property tax relief. The site also allows the public to provide ideas on government spending and operations directly to the Office of Taxpayer Accountability.
"Government accountability starts with open communication between government and the taxpayers we serve," said Governor Paterson. "This website invites you to join my new Office of Taxpayer Accountability in reforming State government operations."
The website is designed to keep taxpayers -- that's us -- informed of, as the Governor's office puts it, "the many fiscal and budgetary reforms that we've accomplished, reforms that started on my very first day in office."
Hopefully, the website will also keep us informed of how NYS government is spending our money, and the effort to stop spending as if that taxpayer money grew on trees!
"The current fiscal and economic crisis has made one thing crystal clear: 'business as usual' in Albany cannot be tolerated, said the Governor. "State government is too big, too costly, and too inefficient. And we owe it to you, the taxpayer, to hold State government more accountable."
Seems to us that its always business as usual, Gov. You owe it to us, the taxpayer, to quit the partisan bickering and figure out ways to operate government more efficiently, spening less of our hard-earned money.
Governor Paterson created the Office of Taxpayer Accountability in June to focus on four main areas of State and local government: eliminating waste, fraud and abuse in State government; promoting shared services to cut spending and improve efficiency; limiting unnecessary and unfunded mandates; and improving local government savings and efficiencies.
Since its creation, Governor Paterson and the Office of Taxpayer Accountability claim to have taken several decisive actions to cut government spending and improve efficiency, including:
-Ordering State agencies to cut travel by 25%;
-Advancing local government mandate relief legislation, which passed the State Senate;
-Signing a local government consolidation law;
-Improving cost-cutting results through inter-agency shared purchasing;
-Merging certain State agency operations; and Reviewing the State"s nearly 600 commissions, advisory councils, and task forces to eliminate the ones that are not absolutely necessary.
So, are we saving any money yet? Has that dreaded tax bill gone down?
When this new-found "accountability," built upon a foundation of "reform" (what? Again?), results in savings to the taxpayers -- and not additional taxes by way of new and increased fees -- give a shout out.
Shedding light on government waste, fraud, and outrageous spending, by making government more transparent and accessible is a good thing. Actually eliminating waste, prosecuting fraud, and curbing the spending that has put New York in the deep fiscal hole in which it now finds itself, would be even better!
For more information on the Office of Taxpayer Accountability, visit http://taxpayer.ny.gov.