Kaine cuts $1.4M from office budget

Published 11:17 am Wednesday, October 8, 2008

RICHMOND–Gov. Timothy M. Kaine said today he will cut staff and reduce other spending in the executive office budget, including his Cabinet.

The cuts total more than $900,000 for the remainder of fiscal year 2009 and increase to $1.4 million on an annual basis – or 10 percent – in fiscal year 2010. Combined with reductions made in October 2007 and February 2008, including a 5 percent reduction in the governor’s salary, budget cuts to the governor’s office budget now amount to more than $1.9 million annually. The resulting reductions in the personal residence budget total 10 percent.

Last month, the governor ordered his staff to scrub the budget for his office and the Governor’s Mansion for items to eliminate.

“If Virginia families and businesses have to make difficult spending decisions in tough times, we need to show them we’re doing the same,” Kaine said. “Taxpayers trust us to run a lean government. All these cuts – big and small – add up, and they all count.”

The cuts announced today include:

Elimination of eight positions through layoffs and turnover

Trimming almost 25 percent off the grocery bill for official events at the residence

Reductions in travel for state business by the governor and first lady

Reductions in staff cell phone costs, newspapers subscriptions and travel

Ending purchase of bottled water

Sending more invitations to functions by e-mail instead of by the Postal Service

Cutting dry cleaning bills for linens used at official events at the residence

The governor will announce his revenue reforecast and statewide spending reductions for fiscal year 2009 on Thursday.