Right wing organization WPRI released its own commentary about the state budget and the deficits that it has faced over the last number of years. One of the big villains of the report is the act of filling budgetary holes with one-time revenues. This is truly an odd detail for WPRI to attack since the leader of the organization, George Lightbourn could be a poster child for that very technique.
George Lightbourn was the Secretary of Administration under two Republican governors. One was Governor Scott McCallum who presided over what was probably one of the worst budget crises in state history. Actually, at the time, Lightbourn admitted to reporters that the state budget “was in the worst shape that it had been in some twenty years.” They managed to accomplish that dubious distinction without having to manage anything like the current economic crisis that the entire globe is now facing.
In an attempt to partially fix their budgetary mess, Lightbourn and his boss thought it wise to do a one time quick fix, by raiding the tobacco settlement fund. Essentially they sold off the entire tobacco settlement for only pennies on the dollar. In short, Lightbourn and the administration that he helped run, did the very same thing that his conservative organization is now condemning. Is he hoping that everyone simply forgets his past role or is he just a glutton for punishment?