I have had an ongoing conversation with my mother about the budget woes in my “home” state of Illinois (I use that term loosely as I lived in Illinois for a very limited time in my youth) and the fact that my brother has stated publicly that the only way out of the mess is higher taxes. He states there aren’t enough areas to cut to balance the budget.
I have responded that course of action is simply a left leaning view of the world. There can be cuts made, some will be difficult if not politically impossible to make, but they can be done. For an example, newly elected Republican Governor from the Garden State delivered this speech outlining his budget cuts in New Jersey. It is a facinating speech:
New Jersey is in a state of financial crisis. Our state’s budget has been left in a shambles and requires immediate action to achieve balance. For the current fiscal year 2010, which has only four and one-half months left to go, the budget we have inherited has a two billion dollar gap. The budget passed less than eight months ago, in June of last year, contained all of the same worn out tricks of the trade that have become common place in Trenton, that have driven our citizens to anger and frustration and our wonderful state to the edge of bankruptcy.
What do I mean exactly? This year’s budget projected 5.1 % growth in sales tax revenue and flat growth in corporate business tax revenues. In June of 2009, was there anyone in New Jersey, other than in the department of treasury, who actually believed any revenues would grow in 2009-2010? With spiraling unemployment heading over 10%, with a financial system in crisis and with consumers petrified to spend, only Trenton treasury officials could certify that kind of growth. In fact, sales tax revenue is not up 5%, it is down 5.5 %; and corporate business tax revenue is not flat, it is down 8%. Any wonder why we are in such big trouble? Any question why the people don’t trust their government anymore and demanded change in November? Today, we must make a pact with each other to end this reckless conduct with the people’s government. Today, we come to terms with the fact that we cannot spend money on everything we want. Today, the days of Alice in Wonderland budgeting in Trenton end.
The facts are that revenues are coming in $1.2 billion below what was projected last year, and over $800 million in additional spending was done by the previous administration on their way out the door.
He goes on to outline his drastic measures to balance the budget. Of course, the Democrats attacked him before he was even through with his address. Governor Christie is showing real leadership; watch in the next few weeks as the Democrats and the MSM try to tear him apart.