Perdue says outsourcing could save state millions


"Yesterday, when I saw the results of the audit, which I totally believe in, I knew that we needed to leak this out, that we were really focused on this and that we have a plan to fix it," she told ABC11 Wednesday.

The audits say agencies often don't know about low, pre-negotiated prices on everything from batteries to automotive filters because the procurement system is so broken.

"So agencies may be out purchasing these commodities for some other price and not necessarily the best price," explained State Auditor Beth Wood.

For months, Perdue has been working on a massive re-organization of state government. All along, she's said all options are on the table - in this case, that means outsourcing.

"The back office functions of procurement and contracting, both, could be and should be done more efficiently by an outside company that can do it and does it all over the country," she explained.

The ABC11 I-Team has uncovered hundreds of millions of dollars in potential savings found in other state audits - many of which were never acted on and have been forgotten.

With the state staring down a three and a half billion dollar deficit, political analyst David McLennan says stories like that may make a difference come 2012.

"This kind of story - given that so many cuts are going to be made in the next 12 months - this is the kind of information that makes voters angry and they take their anger out on elected officials," he explained.

We asked Perdue - the state's top elected official - if the buck stops with her when it comes to money wasted by state agencies that are led by her cabinet members.

"The buck does stop with me, the Governor, that's why I'm doing what I've got to do," she explained.

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