Illinois Republican General Assembly members propose spending reforms, more accountability

Forget that title – we were only kidding. The actual headline is:

“Texas Governor Proposes Spending Reforms, More Accountability.”

Though it sure would be nice to read such a story about how Republican members of the Illinois General Assembly were proposing and then seeking to seriously advance reforms such as:

  • Instituting a strict state spending growth limit.
  • Using dedicated revenue sources strictly for their dedicated purposes.
  • Constructing a budget with a more detailed listing of expenditures.
  • Requiring that individual state expenditures be posted online.
  • Amending the Illinois constitution to allow for tax refunds when surpluses occur.

The above bullet points are from a package of spending restraints and increased accountability for how taxpayer money is spent by Republican Texas Governor Rick Perry.

According to a Heartland Institute article, the governor’s reforms include:

1. “…a stricter spending limit based on the state’s population growth rate and inflation, similar to Colorado’s Taxpayers Bill of Rights measure.”

2. Requiring “dedicated revenues–revenues from fees and taxes intended to fund specific types of expenditures–to be used only for the specific purpose for which they were intended.

3. Require “more detail in the state’s budget document. Currently, each agency’s appropriation is arranged into various categories, called strategies. A strategy can correspond either to a single program or to multiple programs.

4. “Perry’s fourth recommendation is for agencies to post individual expenditures on the Internet in a clear, concise, consistent format.”

5. “The fifth reform would allow the return of tax money to the state’s taxpayers in the event the state runs a budget surplus.”

Regarding bullet point #4, the Heartland article states that –

“If the taxpayers are picking up the bill, they ought to be able to look at every item on the receipt,” said Perry. The intent is to publish the state’s check register online.

We know that there are many elected Republicans here who wish it were the good old days.  Back then, news stories like this never saw the light of day in Illinois.

Click here to read the entire article.