Gov. campaign manager: "Sen. Ige can't add"

Published On: Jun 10 2014 02:38:16 PM HST
Abercrombie and Ige
HONOLULU -

The campaign manager for Gov. Neil Abercrombie slammed Sen. David Ige on Tuesday for errors that led to the unbalanced state budget.

Abercrombie is facing Ige in the Democratic primary for governor.  Ige is also the chair of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means.

The governor announced on Monday that he will have to veto some of the Legislature's proposed spending so the numbers will add up.

Abercrombie explained the budget bill and the bond authorization bills are supposed to be in balance, but they are not.

"Sen. Ige can't add," said Bill Kaneko, campaign manager for Abercrombie for Governor.  "As chair of the Senate money committee, he was responsible for the $46 million budget discrepancy.  This is a significant error that could jeopardize the State's operations and expenditures."

The governor called a press conference on Monday to announce the issue with the state budget.

"Last week, we worked with the governor's Department of Budget and Finance and House and Senate leadership to develop a solution for this issue, so yes, I questioned the press conference, but the reason and need for it should be directed to the governor's office," said Ige.

Ige said he became aware of the technical errors in the state budget and the bond authorization last week.

"We have agreed on the actions required and avoided a special session that would increase costs.  The errors are technical in nature and are easily resolvable if the legislature and Administration work together on a solution.  I am ready and willing to do this to quickly resolve the situation," said Ige.

To solve the problem, Abercrombie says he will veto about $45 million in proposed spending by the Department of Education for its facilities improvement projects.

State budget director Kalbert Young says the Department of Education has agreed to the change and has said the reduced funding will not cause delays to current projects.

Young says lawmakers will have to reinstate those funds when they return in the next legislative session.

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