I believe any budget, including a family budget or the state budget, is fundamentally a values document that expresses what our priorities are. Here are some things you can expect in a Cote Administration:
- Every line and item will be scrutinized and the priority will always be on how public dollars support the goal of creating good jobs, growing Maine’s economy and – wherever possible – supporting people who are working hard to make ends meet.
- I and anyone who works in my administration will always stay engaged, work hard, and show respect to anyone honestly participating. I will not, as governor, ever drop my budget and walk away from the process, refuse to participate or allow appointees to participate, and then veto the bipartisan solutions others develop. That is failed leadership, pure and simple.
- With a military and business background versus a traditional political one, I will expect rigorous cost projections to evaluate each program or proposed program. Wherever possible, I will insist on metrics showing return on investment (ROI) and program effectiveness.
- Openness to reform and new ways of doing things. A lot has changed over the past 30-plus years. There are innovators in state and local government and in the private and not-for-profit sector across the country finding new ways to collect and analyze data, develop new solutions to problems, and measure success. We need a governor who sees reform and renewal as a smart way to leverage each public dollar more efficiently and deliver outcomes for Maine taxpayers.
- In a Cote administration, we will measure success by the number of new jobs created and by reducing the number of Mainers – especially children - living in poverty. While we can disagree about many things, we cannot accept living in a state where one-in-five Maine children – 55,000 kids, the worst rate in New England – go to bed and go to school hungry.