Rep. Arnold: Indiana’s state government ranks best in the nation

Posted by: Peter Hoffman  | Monday, March 20, 2017

Indiana recently received some great news regarding the function and efficiency of its state government. U.S. News and World Report recently ranked Indiana No. 1 on its list of best states for government. The ranking was based on several categories including, fiscal stability, budget transparency, government digitalization and state integrity. These results further solidify Indiana as a state that works for all Hoosiers.

The commonsense and conservative actions taken by the Indiana General Assembly, the statewide elected offices and the executive branch have helped collectively reduce the size of government and streamlined services, bringing Indiana national recognition. I am committed to helping drive this momentum forward by continuing to make our state a destination for families and job creators alike.

As for the report’s specific rankings, Indiana was ranked first in the nation for budget transparency. Indiana has had an honestly balanced budget since 2005, and we are on track to continue this streak of fiscal responsibility this legislative session. It’s important to remember that Indiana has continued to fund its priorities while also cutting taxes and tightening its belt. The last three biennial state budgets, for example, have included the largest investments ever in K-12 education.

Honestly balanced budgets have afforded Hoosiers real and tangible benefits. Under practical management, Indiana’s government has become more responsive and efficient, while costing Hoosier taxpayers less of their hard-earned dollars. Indiana lawmakers have also maintained a prudent budget reserve of at least 10 percent of current-year revenues over the past three biennial budgets. This reserve serves as a rainy day fund, cushioning critical services, like K-12 education, from unexpected economic downturns. It is also an essential element of our AAA credit rating with all three national ratings agencies. By sending the signal that Indiana is fiscally responsible, both state and local government can finance projects at very low interest rates resulting in tremendous savings for Hoosier taxpayers.

House Republicans have also maintained a commitment to transparency and digitization in government. Each House session has been broadcast online since 2005, and House committee meetings have been broadcast since 2007. In 2011, House Republican members authored legislation to increase budgetary transparency within state and local government. The resulting law required the state auditor to create the Indiana Transparency Portal, www.in.gov/itp/, bringing better visibility, openness and accountability to state government. It gives Indiana taxpayers a detailed look at the state’s finances, such as agency budgets and state contracts, from top to bottom.

Indiana’s high marks for state government demonstrate we are on the right track and we will continue to work this session to preserve our reputation as the best state government in the nation.

I encourage you to contact me with any questions or input at 317-232-9793 or by email at h74@iga.in.gov. Learn more about the work being done at the Statehouse by signing up to receive my email updates at www.in.gov/h74.

 

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State Rep. Lloyd Arnold (R-Leavenworth) represents House District 74, which includes portions of Spencer, Dubois, Perry, Crawford and Orange counties.

A high-resolution photo of Arnold can be downloaded by clicking here.