[r63] Messmer Report: A more cost effective and efficient government

Posted by: Zach Weismiller  | Monday, April 30, 2012

Over the past several years my colleagues and I in the General Assembly have been working diligently to create a more efficient system of government. One of the first major steps towards accomplishing this goal was the creation of the Select Committee on Government Reduction. Created in 2011 by House Speaker Brian Bosma, the committee works to reduce government redundancy in order to cut costs.

Through the committee’s work over the last two years, we were able to remove antiquated practices from our state and local governments. Some of the processes were being duplicated, or even triplicated. This year 23 boards, councils, commissions and agency programs were eliminated to reduce the net number of gubernatorial, legislative and administrative appointments made by more than 220.

In addition to cleaning up boards and commissions, the committee also included numerous provisions that will seek to modernize several state agencies. For example, streamlining the Indiana Economic Development Corporation’s (IEDC) reporting requirements will allow IEDC staff to spend more time attracting new jobs to Indiana and less time preparing and submitting duplicative reports.

In a separate effort to cut costs, we were able to reform various election law matters this year. The legislation provides that if there is a contested election for any office of a municipality, all nominees for each office must be shown on the ballot. It also allows a County Election Board to allow there to not be an election for a municipal office if the nominee is uncontested. In order to do this, the County Election Board must pass a resolution with a unanimous vote. The resolution would only be valid until January 1 of the year immediately following the election in question.

Overall, this legislation allows local governments to run their elections more efficiently. Most importantly though, removing unopposed candidates from ballots can save money for local governments holding elections and allow them to make the decision at the local level.

I’m pleased with the progress we’ve been able to make over the last two sessions that are cutting the costs of our government across the state and creating a more efficient government. Thank you for your continued support.