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Governor signs Executive Order #4 establishing the GEAR Board to identify efficiencies
DOVER, Del. – Governor John Carney signed Executive Order Four on Thursday, establishing the Government Efficiency and Accountability Review Board (GEAR) to identify, on an ongoing basis, opportunities for cost savings in state government.
Members of the board are listed in the text of the executive order, which is available below.
The board, which will begin meeting in the next month, will develop recommendations for increasing efficiency and effectiveness across state government. Its members will explore ways to improve the strategic financial planning process, and expand the use of metrics in determining how to allocate state resources.
The board’s recommendations will be intended to consistently improve the way the state delivers services, and to improve the quality of those services.
“We need a serious, permanent effort to identify cost savings and efficiencies in state government, and that’s what we’ll get with the GEAR Board” said Governor Carney. “We must do things differently than we’ve always done them, and find smarter ways to operate more effectively and protect taxpayer dollars. Delawareans expect us to responsibly manage their money, and we’re committed to doing just that.”
Each year, by December 1, the GEAR Board will submit a report to the Governor, including recommendations that may be included in the recommended state budget. Recommendations may include ways that state government agencies can share services, and new methods for improving the recruitment, development and retention of state employees.
By May 1 of this year, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget and the Secretary of Finance will produce a report for the Governor, including recommendations for the General Assembly’s Joint Finance Committee to review as its members finalize the Fiscal Year 2018 state budget.
Annual reports of the GEAR Board will be made public.
“Our challenge as a government is providing the services that residents want and need in their daily lives, while keeping costs down,” said Representative Melanie George Smith, D-Bear, co-chair of the Joint Finance Committee. “We on the Joint Finance Committee appreciate what Governor Carney is doing by looking for ways to cut costs, and fund services responsibly for our taxpayers. Our goal is to continue providing necessary, quality services at a good value.”
“I think Delawareans should be heartened by the efforts of both the legislative branch – through the Joint Finance Committee – and now the Governor’s Office, to do a top-down review of our budget as we grapple with challenges this year and beyond,” said Senator Harris McDowell, D-Wilmington North, co-chair of the Joint Finance Committee. “We are all committed to leaving no stone unturned when it comes to balancing our budget in a way that protects working families. And on June 30 we will deliver a balanced budget that meets the needs of all our citizens.”
“It’s prudent to constantly reassess how we can make government more effective and responsive,” said Delaware House Minority Leader Danny Short, R-Seaford. “My hope is that this effort produces tangible suggestions that lead to implemented results, not only to improve government, but to increase the success of our economic development initiatives.”
TO: HEADS OF ALL STATE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES
RE: ESTABLISHING THE GOVERNMENT EFFICIENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY REVIEW BOARD
WHEREAS, the United States and the State of Delaware have experienced sustained but modest economic growth over the past eight years in the aftermath of the nation’s extraordinary economic setbacks suffered in 2008; and
WHEREAS, the combination of modest economic growth, a decline in labor force participation rates due to an aging population, and the State’s unique revenue mix have each contributed to modest revenue growth over the past eight years and DEFAC has forecasted that revenue growth may continue to be constrained by these factors for years in the future; and
WHEREAS, the State of Delaware current forecasts a $350 million gap for fiscal year 2018 and DEFAC anticipates continuing budget gaps well into the future unless expenditure growth is constrained and/or revenues are increased; and
WHEREAS, the State of Delaware is committed to the most transparent and responsible use of taxpayer funds as it strives to overcome fiscal challenges, while promoting a smarter and more efficient State government; and
WHEREAS, the State has periodically undertaken top to bottom reviews of State spending but has failed to institute a permanent and ongoing program to continuously identify, monitor, and implement programs, policies and processes that bend the cost curve downwards, boost efficiency and cut costs elsewhere within State government.
NOW, THEREFORE, I JOHN C. CARNEY, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Governor of the State of Delaware, do hereby DECLARE and ORDER the following:
APPROVED this 16th date of February 2017.
John C. Carney
Secretary of State