O'Malley to Marylanders: Bring Us Your Budget-Cutting Ideas
Somewhere amidst the cranks, digressions, impractical riffs, redundancies, pet peeves and throwaway lines, there are veins of gold. At least that's one of the big ideas behind throwing open the mechanics of everyday government to the tinkering of the Internet masses.
Gov. Martin O'Malley is trying it with the state's red ink, asking the people how they'd slash, nip and tuck their way to hundreds of millions of savings in the state's recession-ravaged budget. Aug. 10 is the deadline for submitting your money-saving ideas to the state. Officials said they have begun poring through more than 450 pages worth of entries so far.
Officials sent on a few. Among them:
- Initiate a shut-down for all agencies across the board for one day a month
- Cut back on all the free welfare programs
- Privatize the bus company
Fine enough for today. But this seems like a good way to see what's on everyone's minds -- and to see what actually happens after the state reaches out. How many nuggets are out there? And will the state's foray into crowdsourcing be a source of insight, or just techno-cool window dressing on the old-school politics and bureaucracy of budget making?
I've requested the full list of thousands of entries so we can tackle those questions in this space. Will post more when state officials send it.
August 6, 2009; 1:33 PM ET
Categories: Governor , Maryland State Budget
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