Yesterday, I received an e-mail (I think we all did) from some online magazine promoting an interview with Sonny Perdue, who by all accounts is savy when it comes to technology. Put it this way, I was impressed with the Governor’s knowledge. However, Perdue words mean little in comparison with his actions.
In the interview he said the following (emphasis mine):
Transparency of information has not always been fondly accepted in political environments. I believe if you’re going to run a government, the more information that’s out there, the more opportunity there is for doing better. And I just think it’s the right thing to do. Many times Republicans get accused of being more close-minded [about transparency]. But I’ve felt there are advantages in running a very transparent government, and technology is one of the ways that you can be extremely transparent. The business information you can put out there is extremely powerful [for running the state more effectively].
If this is the case then why did the Governor veto HB 91?
HB 91 says:
3) For the following reports, an electronic document or access to the state accounting system shall be sufficient:
(A) A list of all written contracts entered into by the agency during the immediately preceding fiscal year which call for the agency to expend at any time in the aggregate more than $50,000.00;
(B) A list of any employment or consultant contracts, whether or not in writing, under which the employee or consultant is to be compensated more than $20,000.00, including direct and indirect or deferred benefits. When a person or firm, whose salary or fee is reportable under this subparagraph, shall have his or her compensation increased at any time, the amount of such increase and the total new rate shall be reported for the period in which the increase takes effect. The list of contracts shall state the anticipated amount of funds to be paid thereunder or the formula for determining such amount;
(C) A list of the names of each person, firm, or corporation that has received from the agency during the immediately preceding fiscal year payments in excess of $20,000.00, including the amount paid to such person, firm, or corporation during such period; and
(D) A list of consultant expenses and other professional services expenses; salaries and expenses of full-time and part-time employees and board members; and payments rendered by outside companies or agencies to the agency for any and all services. Social security numbers shall not be used as employee identifiers in these reports.”
The purpose of the bill was to shed some light on how taxpayer dollars are being spent by the state’s executive branch.
Apparently, Sonny Perdue is one of those not fond of transparency.