FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Amy Wojcicki, Communications Director
During an appearance on KGW’s Straight Talk, Chris Dudley once again dodged answering a question about budget cuts and what education programs he will eliminate.
When KGW’s Laurel Porter asked him where he would make cuts in order to balance the budget, Dudley was unable to give a clear answer about where he would make cuts. This was right after Dudley said “when elected officials are in office people expect of them to make decisions, and hard decisions, of to prioritize where the spending is.” Yet Dudley could not demonstrate any decisiveness himself.
Dudley’s inability to talk specific and look at the reality of the budget situation lead the Oregonians Steve Duin to write, “Dudley is still campaigning on the promise that he can cut taxes, begin immediate work on the Interstate Bridge, and set aside 3 percent of state revenue for a rainy day fund without telling us which schools and parks he will close, and which felons he will release from prison, to balance his budget. We deserve better than that.”
“Either Chris Dudley is hiding where he will make cuts to K-12 education, or he is not prepared to answer the question because he is not ready for the job of Governor, said Trent Lutz Executive Director of the Democratic Party of Oregon. “Oregonians deserve answers and Chris Dudley is not prepared to offer anything more than generalizations and empty rhetoric.”
[Dudley]: I think we have to uh I think when elected officials are in office people expect of them to make decisions, and hard decisions, of to prioritize where the spending is. I've said all along that if education truly is our number one priority, why are we going to cut there the same way we’re cutting in other areas? Let’s try to, let’s instead of using the sledgehammer, let’s use the scalpel and try to be uh a little more precise in where we’re going to take the cuts and really look at this.
[Porter]: Education K through 12 makes up one third of state spending. Its share of that 577 million is 243 million. If you want to save education, where are you going to cut? Somebody’s going to get hurt. Where are you going to make that cut of 243 million?
[Dudley]: And let me, let me – because it is such a big piece, you're going to have to make some cuts. It’s just do you do 9 percent across the board or do you do a little less in some areas, a little more in other areas. And I think that’s, that’s where we have to look in and they have to go in and really look at where we can uh cut more in other areas so that we can save more for education. And again the primary issue here, and it’s and I think it’s important for someone coming in from the outside is to change the way that we’re running our government now. To promote private sector job growth, and also to reset the size of government, uh because right now the path we’re on as we’re seeing is unsustainable.
[Porter]: But if you reset the size of government, aren’t you going to have to rollback education even more when it’s already suffering?
[Dudley]: We’re going to have to reset the size in a lot of different areas, not just uh, not looking at education, but looking at some of the structural costs, um and structural costs such as where, PERS and other areas. We’re going to have to look at uh where we’ve had wasteful spending, where uh for example BETC was a, when it was first put into place was a 12 million – 10 million dollar uh budget uh process that has ended up being 900 million dollars, and now that’s been cut back but we have to stop doing uh things like that. We have to, and we really have to look at where we want government, what government’s roles are is, and focus how we’re going to be able to uh uh provide those services.