By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
On Tuesday, July 22, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) announced in a written statement that Kelly Butler will join the Bentley Administration as the new State Budget Officer.
Governor Bentley said, “Kelly has dedicated nearly three decades to the State of Alabama and he brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Executive Budget Office. He is passionate about making sure we are good stewards of the taxpayer’s money and he is dedicated to helping us reduce cost and conserve money where possible.”
Butler said, “I am honored that Governor Bentley has asked me to serve as State Budget Officer. I appreciate the confidence that he has shown in me and look forward to working with him on the challenges that lie ahead for the state budgets.”
According to the Governor’s statement, the State Budget Officer is responsible for the administration and direction of the Executive Budget Office and is responsible for fully upholding the Budget Management Act. The Budget Officer advises the Governor and the Finance Director on all matters relating to the state’s two operating budgets.
Butler has been the Assistant State Budget Officer since July 2012. He has also worked for 19 years with the Legislative Fiscal Office and most recently served as the Senate Fiscal Officer.
Finance Director Bill Newton said, “Kelly Butler’s extensive experience in State government and his conscientious approach to his work make him the perfect choice for this job.”
The State has two budgets. One is for education. It funds Alabama’s K thru 12 education system, the state two year college system, and provides some support for Alabama’s state supported four year colleges and universities. The other budget is the General Fund budget. The money earmarked for the general fund budget is used to fund Alabama’s portion of the Medicaid Program, the courts, the prisons, the state troopers, roads, incentives for industrial recruitment and most functions of state government. Alabama’s two budget budget is unique among state governments as his the exceptionally high amount of earmarking in the budget.
Butler is a graduate of Auburn University Montgomery with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, and has a Master of Business Administration from Troy University.
While the Governor’s office usually submits the two budgets to the legislature, normally the legislature jettisons the governor’s proposal in favor of budgets written by the legislature.