State Representative Barb Gronemus (D-Whitehall) says a zero-based budget is the best way to clean up wasteful spending and to avoid the structural deficits that come up each biennium. She wants the legislature to consider such a plan when it takes up the budget against next spring.
A zero-based budget requires state agencies to essentially start with no funding at all, then money is added for each program and expenditure they justify as the process continues. Gronemus says that will require state agencies to think hard about the programs they have in place and possibly eliminate some that are out of date or no longer needed.
Some funds would have to be protected though, admits Gronemus. She says segregated funds, such as transportation, should be left alone because that funding is often planned years in advance.