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My Blog


Responsible Infrastructure

Our infrastructure here in Montana is in need of improvement which means making an investment and spending money, which I am not always in favor of the government doing. Sometimes though it's not the fact that we spend the money as it is how and on what that bothers me. Our infrastructure for moving people and products however is an area we have no choice on if we want to keep our society and economy moving in a forward direction. I do have a problem when we waste money on these things. I can name certain projects dealing with our roads and bridges where large amounts of money have been spent wrongly.

Sound Financial Plan

What I would like to see, especially in light of the new financial figures released on what has actually come in so far plus whatever extra may come in by the next budget cycle over what was figured for. Instead of holding a special session to see how fast and how much of our money and be spent, with maybe the exception of pay raises which were denied to state workers(mainly the lower paid of our workers); is to sit on the excess. This would give us a nice total of cash to go towards our next budget already in the bank.

Book Keeping Trickery

The Institute for Truth in Accounting list what is known as the top 5 "Sinkhole" states, which
are the worse off financially, and the top 5 "Sunshine" states, the best off. As for us here in
Montana there is both good and bad news. Good news is we are not a sinkhole state
according to the Institute. Unless you account for the fact that 40% of our budget is payed by
the Federal Government. Bad news is, neither are we a sunshine state. Good news: We do
tie for 7th place in the best state list budget wise.

Really Dumb Spending

Let's get back to spending and the budget here. I have spoken about our wasteful spending, here is a specific area.
Ok we live in a state which is rich in wildlife. Now it doesn't take much thought to realize that this wildlife will wander into our roadways. This brings up the bad spending of money. The "Deer Crossing" signs. Come on and be for real. It took a real bright bunch of individuals to bring up the purchase of these things and even brighter to actually purchase and distribute them. I'm really surprised that the elk, bear, badger, and on and on, activist haven't insisted that they have signs for their Prefered animal. Like I said we don't need this waste of money to tell us they may be in the road. And for the real good ones which state, "Deer Xing next 2 miles". Like the deer read those signs and know that they can only cross in that 2 mile zone. What I would like to see is the removal of these totally lame waste of our money and sell them to some other state filled with idiots who don't know animals play in the road.

Montana Budget

Here are a few issues with the Montana budget which we must work to get under control. The 2012 Biennium Budget adopted by the 62nd Legislature comes to the grand total of $10.5 Billion dollars. Of this 40.9% is paid for by the Federal Government. As long as this kind of financial BS continues we will be under the thumb of the Federal Government. We must wean ourself from the Federal teet if we are to survive as a state in control of our own destinies.
With this kind of control over us is one reason the Feds are so fast to try and break bad on us here in Montana.

More Budget Plans

Touching base once more on budget issues here in Montana. Once again I will begin with the state sharpening their pencils so to speak where spending is concerned. This alone will save us millions of dollars off the budget. I have been looking into the money our state motor pool spends. Over 30 million a year. In looking into this I will give credit where it is due. They have been doing just what I believe needs to be done. Sharpening their pencils. The motor pool has been searching for a means to better keep up with state owned vehicles, their use and cost to the state and abusive use by state employees of these vehicles which also cost us money.

A Little More on Our Budget Issues

We have problems which need to be addressed, such as Millions of dollars going out with each budget with no questions asked and no oversight.
We also have much complaint about Federal spending yet Montana brings in roughly $1.50 from the Feds for every $1 that is paid into the Federal system in taxes by Montanans. The Federal Government can not continue to carry us like this. This instance is also one reason why we really catch the raw end of things when they hold back on spending. The Federal Government also has us in a pinch. They get to use this fact as a blackmail point so to speak when we stray away from their power grab over the states. Montana does have the resources and potential to ween ourself off of the Federal milk bag. In fact for our survival this is imperative for us to do.The less we depend on them the less control they have over us. Then and only then can we claim to be a free state.

#1 in Budget Series

I was recently asked about budget issues. Which in and of itself is not a simple nor uncomplicated issue. More so due to the fact that we have created within our government a complex monster with too much waste, overlapping and just down right stupid spending.Also with budget concerns we have real problem with projected revenues. The Legislature uses one set of figures while the Governors office always seem to use a different set. I for one would be more inclined to use a more realistic (conservative for lack of a better word) figure.Unlike many of our office holders, I find it imperative to have a comprehensive jobs creation effort in the works. With such a move we build a stronger economy and expand the "tax base" WITHOUT increasing taxes. Thus giving us a better financial standing to do the things we need done. Add to this an increase in royalties the state receives from other industries where we can expand them and we set the stage for productive budgeting.I will say here that in my efforts to work on the budget issues of the state there are vital areas to look at before we consider cutting anything. These areas include but are not limited to our everyday expenditures, such as office materials, equipment and the likes. This procedure needs to be put into effect for everything the state spends money on: Executive, Legislative, Judiciary offices, DHHS, Schools, the state motor pool, just to name a few. Anything we spend money that we can obtain for less elsewhere, we need to shift the spending. Over paying for anything is not an option. We have to without any question get the most we can out of what we have.I would like to see us be able to trim the spending without having to cut anything at first(most states and the Fed.Gov. would benefit greatly from this one step). This would give us more time to look seriously at the rest of things and how they each effect other areas giving us a better view of what we can and can not do. This is far from the overall means to deal with our budget. It is however a necessary first step.Keep looking for more to come on the budget. This is a subject which will have to be broke down over multiple postings.