Denish wants to end double-dipping
Lieutenant governor also pushes for saving money through capital outlay reform and improving state government’s use of technology
Last spring Gov. Bill Richardson vetoed a bill that would have ended the practice of double-dipping by state employees, with a few exceptions for public safety positions. Today, Lt. Gov. Diane Denish said she wants the state to eliminate “lucrative loopholes for double-dippers” — state employees who are rehired after retiring and receive both a state salary and a pension.
“We need to be tackling the double-dipping that we’ve heard so much about,” Denish said. “Change the system so certain employees are no longer allowed to game the system (and) get the extra paycheck. It’s not fair. The state can’t afford it.”
Denish said and putting an end to double dipping could save taxpayers more than $7 million a year. She wants lawmakers to once again send a proposal to end the practice to the governor during 30-day session that starts in January.
Eliminating double-dipping was one of three government reforms Denish announced Wednesday that she is proposing to help address the state’s massive budget deficit.
At a lightly attended news conference in Albuquerque, Denish also suggested reforms to capital outlay programs and suggested the state could save money by improving the use of technology, like Google Apps, to streamline government operations.
Denish told reporters that she doesn’t want to start talking about tax increases or additional custs to education until officials make government “leander and more efficient.” She suggested that the state’s leaders “must act boldy” during challenging economic times to make state government leaner and more fisccally responsible.
“Before anyone considers further cuts to education or health care, we simply must do everything possible to make government more efficient,” she said. “Taken together, these reforms will save the state millions of dollars, generate economic activity in both the short term and long term, and provide greater accountability to the public for how their tax dollars are spent. New Mexico families are tightening their belts, and government must do the same.”
Listen to Denish’s remarks on reforming capital outlay, ending double-dipping and improving technology systems by clicking play below:
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