Sponsored by:

Comment, blog & share photos

Log in | Become a member
The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted at 12:41 p.m., Tuesday, December 31, 2002

Lingle to freeze hiring for some

By Gordon Pang
Advertiser Capitol Bureau

Gov. Linda Lingle today reaffirmed that to cut costs she will freeze hiring for all nonessential state workers.

The administration, in a press release, gave few specifics on its plans to trim the state budget other than that it intends to halt hiring on vacant positions except for certain jobs within the departments of education, health and public safety and areas "where a freeze would impede the state's ability to collect revenues."

Lingle said today she will also restrict spending in agencies, particularly discretionary expenditures, and will review capital improvement projects that are in the planning stage.

"Over the past month, we've gotten a good handle on the current budget and what we're facing going forward," Lingle said.

"We're now putting everything on the table and taking a hard look at what's being spent, where the money is going, and how efficiently and wisely we're using our limited resources. These cost-control guidelines provide a responsible framework for how all state departments will be approaching fiscal matters as we work to balance the budget."

Lingle intends to submit a revised budget when the Legislature convenes next month, amending the plan submitted earlier this month prepared by the administration of former Gov. Ben Cayetano.

The press release said Lingle intends to stick to her plan to not raid $175 million from the Hawai'i Hurricane Relief Fund, as proposed by Cayetano, and to make up that revenue elsewhere.

Incoming Budget Director Georgina Kawamura said the revised budget will be based on an updated forecast of the state's revenues by the state Council on Revenues on Jan. 10. The Cayetano budget is based on a September forecast showing a 6.1 percent growth.