Governors: Learning to Right-Size the Government

Ultimately, governors know that the challenge isn’t really downsizing, or up-sizing, but right-sizing, government.

U.S.-MapA decade ago, a cartoon showed the presidential limousine whizzing past panhandlers begging for money in front of the Capitol. When the (apparently presidential) speech balloon drawled, “Can’t we get these bums off th’ street?” the reply came: “I’m afraid those are all governors, sir.”

The governors are back in Washington this weekend for their annual meeting, and not much has changed. Four years of recession have left governors with seemingly little to cut — yet, like most governments in this country from the courthouse to the White House, they face a structural mismatch between the spending their citizens still want and the taxes they’re willing to pay for it. For the past decade, I’ve been working with governors across the country to bridge this gap. Doing so successfully involves more than the simple choice normally posed publicly between cutting services and increasing taxes.

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Source: Eric Schnurer | POLITICO