Gov. Sanford Receives Grace Commission Legacy Award
April 15, 2005
Columbia, S.C. – April 15, 2005 – Gov. Mark Sanford, who as a U.S. Representative was ranked No. 1 in the entire U.S. Congress by Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) for his votes to limit federal spending and lower taxes, this week received that organization’s prestigious Grace Commission Legacy Award. Given to leaders who demonstrate "tireless efforts to make government more accountable" and "show rare political courage in protecting taxpayers," the Grace Commission Legacy Award is named for J. Peter Grace, appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1982 to head up a massive government efficiency commission. The "Grace Commission" resulted in thousands of cost-cutting recommendations that saved taxpayers millions of dollars.
"Mark Sanford is a taxpayer hero, pure and simple," said CAGW President Tom Schatz. "During his six years in Congress and his two-and-a-half years as Governor of South Carolina, he has consistently stood up for the taxpayer even when it wasn’t the politically popular thing to do. Too many politicians swim along with the stream. Mark Sanford has always been a leader who creates his own current."
Legislative budget writers took over $100 million in direct savings from Gov. Sanford’s groundbreaking FY 2004-05 Executive Budget, the first executive branch budget in South Carolina history that could have been used to operate state government entirely on its own (previous Executive Budgets in South Carolina were essentially cost estimates for specific pet projects). Many of the governor’s budget savings came directly from his Management, Accountability and Performance (MAP) Commission report, a top-to-bottom look at government modeled after President Reagan’s Grace Commission. The governor’s current Executive Budget for FY 2005-06 includes over $160 million in suggested savings to the taxpayer.
"We’re going to continue our push for more efficient, accountable government here in South Carolina," Gov. Sanford said. "That’s what the taxpayers deserve and that’s ultimately the fiduciary responsibility I accepted when I was elected. Ronald Reagan talked about being a ‘Happy Warrior’ so that’s what I’m going to continue to be."