Governor's Plan: Overview and Accountability Reform

This outline of the Governor's plan was provided by the Office of the Governor to Reporters, Educators, and Legislators.
Where We Are Now
  • Governor Riley has inherited a fiscal crisis unprecedented since the Depression
  • Previous administrations have refused to confront the problems of our state in a fundamental and comprehensive manner
  • We are facing a $675 million shortfall that will result in devastating cuts in essential state services
  • Governor Riley is committed to protecting our seniors, creating higher paying jobs, and making Alabama a leader in education
Governor Riley is Cutting Waste and Abuse
  • Governor Riley has already implemented reforms that save taxpayers over $230 million, including...

— Executive order to ban all pass through pork

— 5% reduction in state personnel costs

— cut governor's staff by 30%

— reformed state vehicle and state travel policy

— freeze on merit raises for state employees

— medicaid drug reform

...and he will continue to find ways to save money

  • Many of these savings cannot be realized immediately
  • Because of excessive earmarking, much of this needed money cannot be redirected to the proper funds
  • But the problems can’t be solved through cuts alone
Consequences of Doing Nothing
  • Slash services by $675 million and compound Alabama’s current problems
  • 60 senior service centers would be closed, eliminating 800,000 meals for the elderly
  • Thousands of teachers would be laid off
  • 50,000 child support cases would be affected, causing a loss of $50,000,000 in annual child support payments
  • State Trooper routine patrol and response manpower would be reduced by 1/3
Governor Riley’s conditions for reform
  • Any tax proposal must also include significant accountability reforms  — “no accountability, no new taxes”
  • Any tax proposal must be fair to all Alabamians
  • Alabama's tax burden must remain equal to or below that of our sister southern states
Governor Riley's Plan
  • Comprehensive accountability and tax reform

— mandates significant accountability reform

— raises the necessary revenue to fundamentally change Alabama

  • Makes Alabama's tax system fair — reduces the unfair burden on Alabama’s poorest citizens
  • Ensures that tax dollars are spent responsibly and strong accountability measures are in place
  • Provides full funding for innovative programs such as college scholarships and the Alabama Reading Initiative
Accountability Reform: Overview
  • Un-Earmard all new tax revenue
  • Increase the contribution of teachers and state employees for health insurance
  • Prohibit all pass-through pork
Accountability Reform: Un-Earmarking

—  Establishes the Alabama Excellence Fund as a separate fund within the state treasury

—  Provides that all new tax revenue be deposited in the Alabama Ecellence Fund for targeted investment

Accountability Reform: Public Employee Health Insurance

—  Provides that state employees share in the cost of health insurance premiums —  Requires that employees meet the regional average for contributions
—  Provides that the changes be phased-in over time
—  Allows discounted rates for employees living below a family income equal to twice the federal poverty level
—  Reduces state contributions for employees who retire with less than 25 years of service

Accountability Reform: Pass Through Pork
  • Restores accountability to the appropriations process
  • Prohibits public funds from being passed secretly from one entity to another