Letter: New legislation will improve accountability
By Elburn Herald
on March 25, 2010
Republicans in both the House and Senate have been consistently communicating with Governor Quinn to bring his attention to public opinion on the state budget and other critical issues.
Their ideas, combined with your suggestions submitted through www.reinventillinois.com, have identified hundreds of key proposals that could help restore fiscal responsibility to our state.
Iâ€™d like to share one of my pieces of legislation that I believe will change the financial face of our state.
Each year, the Illinois Comptroller is mandated to provide a report to the General Assembly and the people of Illinois on expenditures made by each state agency. This Comprehensive Annual Financial Report covers July 1 to June 30, and is printed and filed once all department reports are received and audited by the auditor general.
The report that covers July 2008 to June, 2009 has not yet been filed. Thatâ€™s rightâ€”funds spent 20 months ago are still not publically accounted for. Why? Because all departments do not provide their information in a timely manner for audit. Could you balance your checkbook not knowing what you had spent for nearly two years? My bill will change that.
This week, House Bill No. 6267 received unanimous approval from the House of Representatives. It creates specific deadlines; all reports must be received for review by the auditor general by Oct. 31, and the Comptroller must provide an official report by Dec. 31. To encourage a timely response, state agency directorsâ€™ salaries may be withheld until they submit the required information. Government must be accountable to the people.
The budget deficit in Illinois is not simply a result of the national economy. We must work in a bi-partisan manner and find common sense solutions to get our state back on the right track. That means reforming government and retooling how this state does business. It means creating a budget that is both responsible and treats our residents with dignity; not an easy task.
It is an honor to serve as your State Representative. I welcome and encourage additional suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
State Rep. Kay Hatcher