Governor Robert Bentley unveils road to $1 billion in savings - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Governor Robert Bentley unveils road to $1 billion in savings

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Governor Robert Bentley on Thursday announced the State of Alabama is on track to reach $1 billion in annual savings thanks to extensive efforts to reduce costs and increase government efficiency.

Bentley unveiled the state's Road to a Billion Dollars in Savings at the State Capitol.  The long-term savings effort contains a series of initiatives led by Governor Bentley.  Many are already in place, and moving forward, Governor Bentley and legislative leaders are committed to building on their collaboration and identifying further savings to reach the billion-dollar savings goal by the end of the current term.

"The bottom line is this: We made a promise to the voters to right-size Alabama government, and we're living up to that promise," Governor Bentley said.  "During challenging financial times, taxpayers re-evaluate their own spending and make adjustments.  State government must do the same.  That's the idea behind enacting these savings.  Through the efforts of my office and the support of our legislative leadership, I'm proud to announce we can achieve a billion dollars in annual savings for the taxpayers of Alabama."

Based on fiscal notes and conservative estimates from the Alabama Department of Finance, Governor Bentley and legislators have already taken action to realize nearly $675 million in current and projected savings.  Here's a breakdown: 

  • 2011 Pension Reform Measures: $181.5 million    (annual savings)
  • 2012 Pension Reform Measures: $164.1 million    (average annual savings)
  • Workforce Right-Sizing: $181.3 million    (annual savings)
  • SEIB/PEEHIP Reform: $61.3 million    (average annual savings)
  • DROP Repeal: $58.5 million    (annual savings)
  • Indigent Defense Reform: $19.4 million    (annual savings)
  • Various Bond Refinancings: $8.3 million average per year    (Nearly $93 million total over the life of the bonds)

Total Current and Projected Savings: $674.4 million

Remaining Goal: $325.6 million

The Governor's Office says the current and projected savings benefit both the Education Trust Fund and the General Fund budgets.