Bentley Dropping Riley's Budget Process

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Governor Robert Bentley's administration has abandoned a budgeting process used by former Governor Bob Riley's administration that required government agencies to set goals and plan their spending to achieve those goals.

The budgeting process, which went by the acronym SMART, was run out of the state's Executive Planning Office. The last person to head that office, Jonathan Barganier, told the Anniston Star that data collected was useful, but it often wasn't used by legislators for budget decisions. He said the additional paperwork it required was a challenge.

The governor's press secretary, Jennifer Ardis, said agencies are still using core concepts of SMART budgeting, even though the Executive Planning Office is no longer staffed.

One of the creators of SMART budgeting, Jim Williams, called the change disappointing.