Transparency and savings through state government efficiencies will be explored this fall in two interim studies led by state Rep. Jason Murphey. Innovative transparency and modernization initiatives has been the focus of Murphey’s legislative work since voters elected him to office in 2006.
A transparency reform update study by Murphey and state Rep. Mike Turner, R-Edmond will examine the ongoing implementation of modernization transparency Web portals, including data.ok.gov, documents.ok.gov, forms.ok.gov and openbooks.ok.gov, said Murphey, R-Guthrie.
“Study participants will also examine the possibility of combing the portals a single transparency site,” Murphey said.
Secretary of Finance Preston Doerflinger had requested the study, Murphey said. Doerflinger and Treasury Secretary Ken Miller have noted that transparency is needed to improve the state’s bond ratings. A single transparency site will simplify a pathway to look at expenditures and retrieve documents, Murphey said.
Government Modernization Reform Implementation will be studied to include a comprehensive review of past government modernization reforms. The compliance of state agencies will be reviewed, Murphey said.
“There may be mechanisms for those (agencies) that aren’t complying,” Murphey said.
A cost savings estimate brought by information technology and purchasing with the consolidation of state agencies will be studied in order to acheive greater savings, Murphey said.
“We do know the savings and purchasing reforms will significantly spike upward, based on the last report by Central Purchasing,” Murphey said. “We will obviously highlight that.”
The Board of Cosmotology and Barbering is an example of the consolodation of two agencies during the last legislative session. Murphey said that Gov. Mary Fallin’s signature on the passage of House Bill 1467 — which he authored — will save the state hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Murphey said the measure could be reevaluated if the bill causes any disparity between the two professions.
“There is never any intent to have a winner or loser here,” Murphey said. “It’s just to have efficiency.”
About 50 boards and commissions were either elimidated or consolidated during the last legislative session. Reforms have saved the state at least $60 million annually, Murphey said.
Information gained from the interim study could be used to highlight the need for further tax reduction, Murphey said.
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