Senate Pro Tem Tim Ashe asked - somewhat rhetorically - which programs the Legislature should cut to reduce the epic $430 million budget deficit. The publisher of the Caledonian-Record is glad he asked.
“Vermont employs almost 10,000 people. About 1,800 of them earn over $80,000 a year plus benefits that far exceed what's available to their private sector peers. 651 clear six-figures. That's top heavy and we suspect you could get the same output from half the people. (Savings: $112,500,000). Education is another $2 billion morass and we know that we're paying more than anyone else in the nation for average results and plummeting enrollments. Just get rid of the Education Department, we doubt even they would mind. (Savings: $14 million). Vermont could save another $50 million a year by reducing student/staff ratios to 5.5-to-1, from the current 5.1-to-1 average. Even at 5.5-to-1 we'd still have (by far), the lowest student/staff ratio in the country. (Savings: $50 million)."
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