Sen. Kissel Votes to Cut Agency Spending

January 29, 2010

Commission on Enhancing Agency Outcomes meets to vote on report regarding agency cost saving measures

Senator John A. Kissel (R-Enfield) today voted in support of preliminary efforts to find additional savings within state agencies. As a member of the Commission on Enhancing Agency Outcomes (CEAO) Senator Kissel had the opportunity to participate in putting together a comprehensive report that identifies cost saving measures to be implemented either immediately, within eighteen months, or within three to five years. Pursuant to PA 09-7, the initial report must be submitted the Governor, and House and Senate Leadership by February 1, 2010.

“In light of a $500 million deficit, we have to make every effort to find savings,” said Sen. Kissel. “When funding for a program needs to be increased, it’s difficult enough to find savings in other areas to call it a wash. But the commission has an even more difficult task; we’re trying to actually reduce spending. Our job is not easy, but we owe every one in the state the knowledge that the legislature recognizes the half a billion deficit and is taking it seriously. We can’t look at new expenditures until we get our current spending under control.”

While the version set to be submitted on Monday is just the first draft, Commission members have identified proposals for which they will seek implementation immediately. Many of the immediate solutions are in the area of Information Technology and include plans for an on-line application system for the Department of Motor Vehicles, Department of Transportation, Department of Education, and the Department of Social Services services. The full report also recommends immediate savings by streamlining state agencies, utilizing electronic communication, changes to the contracting process, and maximization of federal funds. After revisions, the report will be available for review at:

During the meeting, Sen. Kissel also identified state employee benefits as an area that needs revision. “The Moodys’ report really highlighted our long-term unfunded liabilities especially pensions, health plans as a real Achilles heel for Connecticut,” said Sen. Kissel. “We need to consider creating a new tier for new state employees. Connecticut’s benefits are highly generous and it will be extremely difficult if not impossible to sustain that going forward.”

“We have got to be about the business of finding real savings in every area possible,” added Sen. Kissel.