With all the enthusiasm of a cat eyeing a pile of wilted arugula, Gov. Abercrombie submitted an initial budget — drafted by the Lingle Administration — to the state legislature this week.
“The budget I am submitting today is not an indication of agreement with the policies of the previous administration,” Abercrombie said in a prepared statement. “To the contrary, there is a broad call from all people of Hawaii for a change in direction.” At the same time, he added, “such dramatic changes…cannot be completed in the two-week period between the inauguration of our new administration and the submittal of the budget.”
The budget, which covers fiscal years 2012 and ’13, features a rather gaping $772 million shortfall. Abercrombie didn’t discuss how he plans to close that gap — other than dipping into emergency funds — but did say he’s confident “that we can and will do better, stimulating our economy and creating the breathing space we need to reinvest in our core priorities.”