More than 30 ways to save the state more than $250 million over the next two fiscal years are contained in recommendations heading to Gov.-elect Dan Malloy by the end of this month.

The ideas are coming from the General Assembly’s bipartisan Commission on Enhancing Agency Outcomes that has been working for more than a year on streamlining the way state government does business.

Included in the commission’s final report, expected to be approved on Dec. 15, will be several recommendations to save on healthcare spending and reduce costs in state purchasing, energy use and administrative functions.

One major recommendation would fold all of the state’s economic development agencies into a single, quasi-public organization.

The bipartisan commission, co-chaired by Sen. Gayle Slossberg (D-Milford) and Rep. James Spallone (D-Essex), and including the ranking members of the Finance and Appropriations committees, Rep. Vincent Candelora (R-North Branford) and Rep. Craig Miner (R-Litchfield), respectively, and others, is also identifying some changes to state employee benefits.

For example, the commission will recommend requiring all state employees to contribute to their retirement health care, increasing employee contributions to their state pensions, and eliminating longevity bonuses. Together, those changes could yield the state an estimated, combined $82 million in savings.

Healthcare

For healthcare savings, the commission is recommending moving more people from residential-facility care back to their homes for assisted-living care to save the state $34 million in fiscal year 2012.

This concept also was endorsed by the Connecticut Regional Institute for the 21st Century, which has said that if Connecticut could reach a goal of 75% of care provided in-home by 2025, the state could save $900 million per year—and give people the choice they want.

Another large target for potential savings involved state contracts, such as saving an estimated $38 million annually through creative purchasing, relying more heavily on multi-state purchasing cooperatives and taking greater advantage of “reverse auctions.

Making Connecticut government work better and more cost-effectively is vital for jobs, the economy and the state’s long-term survival.

For more information, contact CBIA’s Kevin Hennessy at 860.244.1979 or kevin.hennessy@cbia.com.