There is no doubt state legislators faced difficult choices as to what could be cut from the state budget during the past session, however, the reason those choices were difficult was due to the fact that elected leaders have been spending too much in recent years.
If annual outlays are limited to keep up with population growth plus inflation, there is effectively no increase in government spending. According to the Georgia Public Policy Foundation, Georgia has
been spending at a much faster rate over the last decade. This fact implicates both Republicans and Democrats for leading us down an unsustainable path by growing the size and scope government instead of being good stewards of taxpayer dollars.
The cuts for FY 2009 and the FY 2010 budget finally begin to bring Georgia more in line with the benchmark of population growth plus inflation. Despite the $2.5 billion in cuts, there are still areas of waste and pork that shouldn’t be on the backs of taxpayers.
My administration will also urge the legislature to adopt zero-based budgeting, which the Libertarian Party of Georgia backed throughout the 2009 session, to scrutinize and weed out ineffective programs. I will also instruct the state auditor to conduct a cost-benefit analysis of any questionable program.
In keeping with my belief in free markets and limited government, government should not attempt to provide or fund ventures that can be reasonably provided by private entities. Any spending that goes beyond the basic functions of government will be met with my veto.
My administration will not engage in protectionist practices. I will promote free trade and competition by working with the legislature to eliminate barriers that inhibit business.