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Governor Wolf: Executive Order 2015-04…Governor’s Office of Transformation, Innovation, Management and Efficiency (GO TIME)

Wolf Executive Order 2015-04 – Governors Office of Transformation Innovation Management and Efficient – GO TIME

All,

Today, joined by the acting Secretaries of Administration and the Department of General Services, Governor Tom Wolf announced that he would be signing an executive order to establish the Governor’s Office of Transformation, Innovation, Management and Efficiency (GO TIME). Governor Wolf explained that the goal of the office is to modernize state government and make it more efficient.

 

The executive order directs state agencies to generate $150 million in savings in the 2015-16 fiscal year and long-term savings in the hundreds of millions. Wolf noted that in his business, he had to constantly look for saving and efficiencies to make it work better. Wolf is confident that efficiencies can be found in state government in order to improve the delivery of services to the taxpayers. Wolf said that he expects initial findings and cost savings from the office in the coming weeks.

 

Attached is a copy of the executive order signed by Governor Wolf.

 

Following the signing of the order, Governor Wolf took questions from the media. Below is a summary of the comments.

 

Please let us know if you have any questions on this matter.

 

Thank you.

 

 

Q and A

 

As you look across state government, is there any place where you see consolidation or elimination of state agencies?

  • All ideas are on the table but I don’t have any areas I see cutting right away. The goal is to make government operate more efficiently.

 

Are you going to direct this office to look at privatization options as well or contracting out services?

  • I am not sure what the office is going to come up with. I want them to come up with creative answers to improve government operations.
  • Two weeks from now I expect them to come back with numbers and ways to find efficiencies. We have over a $2 billion deficit and need to find ways to close that hole.

 

How would you address someone who could be cynical about this effort? The last three governors have touted the cuts they made to government to make it more efficient. Is there anything left to cut in order to make government more efficient?

  • There is good reason to be skeptical. I have done this in the private sector and know that it can work in state government.
  • It is important to continue to look at ways to make thing better as past inefficiencies can creep back in. I know that you can’t cut your way to prosperity in the private sector or public sector. Change needs to be transformative and done in a cost effective way. That is what I want to do in government.

 

Can you provide a concrete example of something that changed at your company to improve it?

  • One thing we did was consolidating operations where we could and move closer to customers in some areas. We also made the company more customer-friendly which lead to us becoming more efficient. Those are the kinds of things we can look to do in the Commonwealth.

 

Were there any specific issues that came up during the transition that led you to do this?

  • This is a big organization and in any organization there should be opportunities for improvement. Hopefully they can find them quickly.

 

Governor Corbett’s Office of Innovation said they saved $600M. Is there any more money to save?

  • The philosophy of the Office of Transformation, Innovation, Management and Efficiency will be to streamline and modernize our efforts. One way of doing this could be using new technology.

 

Governor Corbett looked at opportunities to privatize operations as a way to streamline government. Is it safe to say that privatization efforts will be less of an emphasis in your Administration? Is privatization off the table?

  • I am open to all innovative ideas. I come from the private sector so I am not opposed to the idea but I won’t take an ideological position on this. Sometimes outsourcing isn’t the cure. The state currently has contracts with private companies to provide services and they have turned out to cost more. We need to take a practical approach and look at what we can do to make government better.

 

Early this week there were reports that your cabinet officials will be making more money than officials in the previous administration. Today you are looking at ways to save money. Do you view that is incongruous?

  • The goal is to have a government that is more efficient overall. There are certain people that might be making more money than their predecessor’s made but overall I think I’m doing a good job in terms of sticking within the budget and spending less than the prior Administration spent. I think that is what I should be judged on, not what individual expenditures are.

 

Have you changed your view on merit selection and if not, will you push for legislation this session?

  • It’s not something that is on my list of priorities. I need to get a budget passed at this point in time. There are a lot of issues facing Pennsylvanians but I think I made it clear in my campaign that I am predisposed to being supportive of merit selection; I would like to see merit selection. The question is if it is something in the cards; it is not in my priority list right now.

 

Is one of your top priorities filling the Treasurer’s position?

  • Yes, you can expect a name to be submitted within a week.

 

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