12/13/10 — State watch: There is reason to keep close eye on budget negotiations

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State watch: There is reason to keep close eye on budget negotiations

The fact that the state is facing a $3.7 billion deficit should put fear in the hearts of anyone who pays taxes in North Carolina.

Although the governor has already announced some cost-saving measures, there is a pretty big bill to overcome and not that much left that is easy to cut.

Add to that the concerns about the national scene, and anybody who has bills to pay needs to be pretty vigilant about watching what the powers that be decide.

The bottom line is, there will have to be some things cut that we do not want cut -- and there will be some money that will not go to places we would have liked to see it go.

That's what happens when you have to watch your budget. North Carolina residents are already dealing with that reality.

But before we hit some of the big ticket items and cut state services, we need to look at the nickels and dimes that add up to overspending.

The first order of business is to eliminate expensive "overbureaucracy" and to cut down on some of the hangers-on who might be collecting state paychecks.

And that is why we need to keep an eye on Raleigh.

We need to make sure that state officials' first thoughts are for what is best for the state, not for political allies and payback.

Otherwise, the only people who are sacrificing will be those who are paying the bills.

Published in Editorials on December 13, 2010 10:43 AM