Out of Control Policy Blog

RI Governor Won't Back Down From Privatization

According to the Providence Journal, privatization efforts are alive and well in Rhode Island. This is great news after reports yesterday that Governor Carcieri was abandoning the much-anticipated plan to privatize "every state service that could possibly be performed more efficiently by the private sector."

The ProJo reports:

"If necessary, we will jump through every hoop and we will fight the inevitable court challenges," Carcieri said in a statement. "Let me be clear: I will not be deterred from my responsibility as governor to do everything possible to solve Rhode Island's budget problems."

The governor's office had worked much of the year to privatize dietary and housekeeping services at the state-run Eleanor Slater Hospital and the state veterans' home – a proposal he said would save $13 million over the next five years."

Unfortunately, the Governor faces some political roadblocks from the state legislature:

"[T]he General Assembly passed a law last week tied to the state budget that applies strict oversight and reporting requirements before any privatization effort can go forward. The provision – put forth by Rep. Charlene Lima, D-Cranston, every year for the past 13 years without success – was introduced near midnight during a marathon House session. It became law last week when the General Assembly overrode the governor's budget veto."

Fortunately, Governor Cancieri knows that privatization is what's best for Rhode Island and is willing to fight for the cause. For more, check out Reason's Annual Privatization Report - http://www.reason.org/apr2006


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