Penang state government tightens purse strings

It is a good thing to note that the Penang state government, led by Lim Guan Eng, has continue to be 'frugal' in its spending which is a vast difference from the days under Gerakan where money was spent lavishly on unimportant and inconsequential things.

It is really good to read that Guan Eng has cancelled the purchase of new cars for the excos costing more than RM600,000 the moment he took office. Seems like the former state government had placed the order.

Then, recently, there were plans to supply laptops and printers for ALL assemblymen (yep, including those sour-puss Opposition) but he also prudently deferred it because the costs comes up to about RM300,000.

Also, the fact the he refused to move into his official residence because it may have to be renovated and repaired since it is quite inhabitable now due to leaks and whatnots. The costs also about RM100,000 or more. He is now staying at his father's house here.

Now, looks like there are more money saving tips that the state government is going into. Most of the functions they hold are either held in government premises (so, no need to rent expensive hotels) or mostly his office. The only hotel functions are by private companies.

Then, when traveling, he has also said that all those traveling due to duty, must do so in economy class. Now, that is commendable since I remember correctly that most of those in the previous administration travel in style and with a large entourage too.

I also heard that the missions overseas by InvestPenang are also done economically. Only selected few get to go and even so, they all travel economy (or better still, try to get the cheap, zero fares from Air Asia and MAS during promotions) and they stay at 'not more than three stars hotels'.

This is what I call leading by example.

I'd like to see the ministers travel by economy! A mere 10% cut in entertainment allowance is nothing since they have high paying salaries and other allowances. I say no more paid vacations and no more first class flights for them! Also, no more new imported cars for them. They should only use Proton Perdana until it is at least 10 years old before being allowed to change to new cars.

And then, all those lavish functions and extravagant events and monumental projects which only benefit certain parties and not the people should all be deferred or if not possible, scaled down. I'd like to see them organising functions and events at government premises instead of renting lavish hotel ballrooms or expensive convention centres!

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