In a dramatic example of a petulant personality who cannot get his way through the legitimate legislative process, Governor Carney has chosen to emulate a Trumpian tactic that shows a healthy disdain for the democratic principle of separation of powers. After failing to get support for his balanced budget constitutional amendment (HB 460), the governor has signed an executive order today, the last day of the legislative session, attempting to force the same mandated budget cuts onto Delawareans through his preparation of next year’s budget bill. In this blatantly disrespectful attempt to abrogate power from the legislature, the governor even barred members of the public from attending the press conference where he signed the executive order.
This lack of respect for the legislative process and separation of powers should never happen in our constitutional democratic republic. It is totally unacceptable in Delaware and should be rejected by the Delaware people.
The press announcement and text of Executive Order #21 are below.
Saturday, June 30, 2018
DOVER – Governor John Carney on Saturday signed Executive Order 21 to implement recommendations of the advisory panel to DEFAC to study potential fiscal controls and budget smoothing mechanisms. The Order will create a benchmark budgeting mechanism, and a Budget Stabilization Fund for budget planning, to help the State of Delaware take a more sustainable, long-term approach to annual budgeting.
Governor Carney and Michael Houghton, Chair of the Delaware Economic and Financial Advisory Council, issued the following statements on the Order following Saturday’s signing:
“Over the past several decades, we’ve seen Delaware’s budget go through good times and bad times,” said Governor Carney. “As every Delaware family knows, you’re supposed to save some of your money during the good times so you can make it through when money gets tight. This Executive Order holds state government to the same standard. It’ll even things out so when a bad economy comes along, we won’t see massive cuts in services or dramatic tax hikes. This is the responsible thing to do for taxpayers who rightly expect us to manage their money wisely.”
“I’m disappointed that we were not able to structurally improve the budget process like our committee recommended. It would have made life more predictable for nonprofits, fire companies and others relying on State funds and avoided the unhealthy ‘feast or famine’ fiscal cycle we are seeing,” said Michael Houghton, Chair of the Delaware Economic and Financial Advisory Council. “As Chair of the Advisory Panel that recommended the changes to the General Assembly, I want to thank Governor Carney for stepping up and initiating changes that more responsibly align State spending with revenues through his Executive Order.”
Full text of Executive Order #21.Executive Order 21 – Budget Smoothing