Pew Center on the States Partners with Georgia, Ohio and West Virginia to Make Government Work Better

Contact: Janet Lane, 202.552.2037 or Andrew McDonald, 202.552.2178


Washington, DC - 03/25/2009 - The Pew Center on the States has selected three states as partners in a yearlong program to strengthen state operations and save tax dollars. Georgia, Ohio and West Virginia will each receive $50,000 and intensive management support from Pew experts and advisors to accelerate state improvements in targeted areas. 

Each state project included in a “Pew Management Lab” will focus on a specific challenge to improve statewide results and will share what works with other states to spur government improvements nationwide.

Georgia’s project will build a system to analyze spending data for all state agencies, universities and colleges that could save millions. “In the current economic crisis, states have to do more with less,” said Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue. “This initiative will continue Georgia’s efforts to ensure we are providing maximum value for our citizens.” Ohio will create new human resources guidelines to ensure that personnel are effectively deployed throughout the state. “This work will help us make the best use of existing state talent to deliver for taxpayers in this tough economy,” said Ohio Governor Ted Strickland.

West Virginia will establish new statewide planning and budgeting systems that will enable the state to ensure the best return on public investments.  “We know we can and must do better to improve our planning and budgeting process,” said West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin III.  “We are pleased to have this opportunity to save taxpayer dollars while delivering better service to our hard-working West Virginians.”

All 50 states were eligible to apply for the program and projects were selected based on the ability to assemble a senior-level team responsible for implementing improvement strategies with results for state taxpayers.  “The economic downturn calls for decisions based on proven results and tangible benefits to the public,” said Susan Urahn, managing director of the Pew Center on the States.  “State governments that improve performance and increase efficiencies will be in the strongest position to weather the challenges of this economy.”

The new Management Labs build off the work of the Grading the States report of Pew’s Government Performance Project, which has examined all 50 states’ management of money, people, information and infrastructure for more than ten years. Pew is committed to turning this research into results for the public as states work to improve government management practices. For more information on the report, visit www.pewcenteronthestates.org/gpp_report_card.aspx.

In addition to the yearlong program working with Georgia, Ohio and West Virginia, the Pew Center on the States Management Labs will host performance seminars that address management challenges and share best practices from leading states. These seminars will be open to all 50 states.

About the Pew Center on the States
The Pew Center on the States (PCS) is a division of The Pew Charitable Trusts that identifies and advances effective policy approaches to critical issues facing states. By researching emerging topics, PCS highlights innovative policy approaches to complex problems for states. When the facts are clear, PCS advocates for nonpartisan, pragmatic solutions. Visit
www.pewcenteronthestates.org for more information.

About the Government Performance Project
The Government Performance Project (GPP) improves service to the public by strengthening government policy and performance. GPP evaluates how well states manage employees, budgets and finance, information and infrastructure. A focus on these critical areas helps ensure that states’ policy decisions and practices actually deliver their intended outcomes. Visit
www.pewcenteronthestates.org for more information.

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