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Here’s an axiom for this year: Cliches and platitudes will grow in inverse proportion to the state’s budget.
We will “pick the low-hanging fruit,” “tighten our belts,” “share the pain” and “bite the bullet.”
As legislators debate all the ways for the state to pay its bills this year, some are taking a longer view. Even without an economic downturn, there’s no way the state could maintain the trajectory of its spending. It’s time, they say, to restructure state government.
“Some lay all the problems we’re having to the national recession,” said Sen. Sander Rue, an Albuquerque Republican. “Others see this as an opportunity to do an in-depth analysis of state government and look at where we have inefficiency, waste and redundancy.”
A committee chaired by former Gov. Garrey Carruthers took the first crack. Their recommendations to the governor included combining departments, changing Medicaid benefits and adjusting the public school funding formula.
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