This morning, we will present more than $360 million in budget actions before the Board of Public Works, bringing the total this year alone to more than $1 billion. Today's actions bring General Fund spending to $600 million less than it was three years ago, as Maryland continues to manage this national recession in a way that maintains the Triple A Bond rating and protects our core priorities of public education, public safety and jobs.
In total, we've introduced $4.6 billion in budget cuts and spending reductions and eliminated over 3,300 state positions.
These have not been easy decisions, but they have been necessary decisions to balance our State's budget, and get our state through this recession more quickly and stronger than other states. Citizens expect and deserve a government that works, and in spite of the most severe recession in a generation we've been working to reform our State government to make more efficient and effective.
Of the FY2010 budget actions, six of every ten dollars have come from reforming state agencies. Today's budget actions include:
* $11 million in savings from efforts to ensure that only people who are eligible for Medicaid receive Medicaid services, and by scaling back unnecessary services;
* $1 million in savings from negotiating lower prices with venders; and
$3 million in savings from streamlining operations and consolidating functions across our government.
Maryland remains one of only seven states to defend a Triple A bond rating, and our unemployment rate remains consistently well below the national average. While there are some economic indicators that show signs of a recovery, we still have a ways to go. Your state government continues to do all we can to create jobs, expand opportunity throughout Maryland, and strengthen the ranks of our middle class including our family owned businesses.