Executive Summary

This report identifies past, current, and future instances of non-essential or wasteful spending by the State of Rhode Island, as well as steps lawmakers can take to save money now and prevent similar instances in future years.

Almost $225 million in non-essential spending has been identified and organized into multiple categories.  The list provides policymakers with opportunities for budget savings without cutting essential services and programs.  The categories are:

  • Handouts
  • Absorption of federal funding
  • Government operations
  • Government personnel
  • Government overreach

The report further recommends that checks and balances be put in place to safeguard taxpayers against frivolous future spending, including:

  • Establishment of a fully empowered Office of the Inspector General
  • Creation of a legislative Office of the Repealer
  • Establishment of a state version of a Grace Commission