Delaware Business Blog

2009 Delaware Budget Address

As you know by now, Delaware Governor Jack Markell delivered his 2009 budget address on March 19, 2009 in Dover.

A link to the entire address can be found at the end of this post, but for those who just want the cliff notes, here’s a summary of statements from the proposal:

We now face a $750M shortfall.

To solve this shortfall, we will:

1) Demand fiscal responsibility. Reductions and new revenue proposals must be real, sustainable and position us for economic growth. We should avoid irresponsible cuts that generate short-term savings at the expense of long-term prosperity. We should not make long-term commitments based on short-term funds.

2) Exercise compassion by keeping our governments core commitments. What are they? I believe we must ensure the health and safety of our families, foster the growth of our economy and protect the quality of our air and water. We must give every child an opportunity to succeed. Assist our senior citizens and those with disabilities when needed. Protect the rights of all of our citizens at all times. This budget keeps those promises, and pays our legal obligations such as debt service and Medicaid.

3) Ensure shared sacrifice. No one person or group will bear a disproportionate burden of this challenge alone.

Closing the ~$750M gap will require a combination of spending cuts and new revenue

…our solution to the $750M shortfall would:

  • Reduce spending by $331M
  • Reallocate special funds by $40M
  • Leverage $155M in federal stimulus funding
  • Raise $55M by re-authorizing a sports lottery
  • Increase our revenues by $166M
  • And raise fees and fines by $12M
  • If you’d like more details, check out the following online resources:

    Read the Delaware 2009 Budget Address: A Blueprint for Solving the Budget Crisis
    View the 2009 Delaware 2009 Budget Solutions Presentation (PDF)

    3 thoughts on “2009 Delaware Budget Address

    1. Michael

      This will have a direct impact on me. My soon-to-be wife, is a Special Education teacher in the Brandywine School system. Her Principal is retiring because of the cuts. The Super of public schools is leaving for West Chester, PA. We can’t lose our smartest and brightest. Can there be another way? Where is waste happening? We need our teachers, our police officers and our fire fighters! They need to stay motivated and provide for their families.

    2. Russell Post author

      Thanks for the comment Michael. No doubt, this issue will have a direct impact on all Delawareans. The Jack Markell’s administration has set up a website soliciting feedback and new ideas. My office received an email message from Jack yesterday containing the following:

      I ask you to help us create new solutions, by sharing your ideas with us on how to create a more efficient, effective, responsive and responsible government by going to

    3. Paul

      I did not get much traction with my idea of cutting the dimmest and dumbest instead of cutting across the board on everyone. The goal seems to be avoiding any layoffs instead of retaining the best and brightest.

      Communal and Social solutions frequently promote mediocrity. The State seems to have a hard time rewarding performance.

      A focus on cutting out the lowest performing people would enable rewards for the best. If the best are not rewarded, they will (because they can) leave.

      Best of luck Jack.

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