Monday, January 14, 2013

Pence Takes Charge

Gov. Mike Pence signed a number of executive orders today shortly after being sworn into office as the state's 50th governor. Here's a look at what those orders say.

State Ethics
13-01 directs every state agency to name an ethic officer to advise its leader and employees on ethics matters. The ethics officer will be responsible for coordinating ethics training for employees and making sure the agency's ethics plan is on file with the Inspector General. The Inspector General is directed to conduct annual ethics training for all state employees. It sounds good on paper, but as we know, the Inspector General's office first enacted by Gov. Daniels by executive order when he took office has earned a reputation for covering up ethical wrongdoing and corruption in state government and punishing whistle blowers. Gov. Pence has retained the person Daniels chose to run the Inspector General's office so I don't expect to see any changes on this front in the near future.

Government Efficiency
13-02 directs the Government Efficiency and Financial Planning Division of OMB to conduct procedural and operational audits of state agencies and programs to evaluate their overall performance on a four-year cycle, prepare performance-based budgeting for OMB, and ensure that all government contracts are electronically available and searchable on the Indiana Transparency Portal.

Regulatory Moratorium
13-03 is one of the most far-reaching at the moment. It imposes an immediate moratorium on the implementation of any rules or regulations not submitted to the Indiana Register prior to January 14, 2013. At the same time, OMB is directed to conduct an immediate cost-benefit analysis of existing administrative rules with an emphasis on those regulations which have the most negative effect on job creation and economic development. OMB is to make recommendations to the Governor and the General Assembly of any regulations it finds should be repealed or modified. There are exceptions to the moratorium, including rules necessary to implement a federal mandate for which there is no waiver. Rules that are necessary to comply with a court order or federal law that would result in sanctions being imposed if the rulemaking activity is not carried out are exempt. Emergency rules for health and safety, those which reduce state spending or are intended to eliminate waste, fraud and abuse are likewise exempted.

Veteran Preference In State Contracting
13-04 runs counter to the overall goal of making government more transparent and efficient. It creates a recognized preference in state contracting opportunities for veteran-owned businesses. The state's MBE/WBE program is already fraught with fraud and corruption. Preferences in state contracting simply provide an excuse to award contracts to political cronies rather than lowest and most responsible qualified bidders.

Family Impact Statements
13-05 is apparently intended to throw a bone to the religious right. It requires agencies such as FSSA, DCS, DWD, Health, DOC and the Criminal Justice Institute to prepare family impact statements in formulating policies and rules with the goal of promoting the stability of the family and marital commitment, avoiding the promotion of out-of-wedlock births, respecting the rights of parents to decide what's best for their children's health, education and welfare, the impact on family earnings and the messages sent to the public concerning the status of the family.

Energy Development Agency
13-06 creates a separate Office of Energy Development within the office of the Governor, removing the energy component of the current Energy & Defense Division within the Lt. Governor's office. The primary purpose of this agency is to hand out public subsidies to promote investment in energy technology within the state.

Education Employment Relations Board
13-07 rescinds a previous executive order enacted by Gov. Daniels that vested control of the Education Employment Relations Board, which oversees collective bargaining rights of public education employees, with the State Superintendent of Public Instruction and returns it to the governor's office, a move intended to strip incoming Democratic Supt. Glenda Ritz of power.

Office of Faith Based and Community Investments and Indiana Commission on Community Service and Volunteerism
13-08 extends the life of these two useless government agencies under the governor's office.

Governor's Emergency Advisory Group
13-09 extends the life of this governmental body formed for the purpose of coordinating the state's response to natural disasters, acts of terrorism and public insurrections.

Indiana Toll Road Oversight Board
13-10 extends the life of the Toll Road Oversight Board, which provides oversight to the state's only toll road, which is currently leased to a private operator.

State Trauma Care Committee
13-11 extends the life of the State Trauma Care Committee to oversee statewide response efforts to traumatic injuries.

Office of Public Finance
13-12 continues the life of the Office of Public Finance, which oversees the state's policies for management of bonds, notes and other evidence of indebtedness issued by the state and its political subdivisions.

Historical Records Advisory Board
13-13 continues the life of the Historical Records Advisory Board that oversees retention and public access to historic public documents of the state.

WGU Partnership for Online Learning
13-14 continues the partnership established by Gov. Daniels with Western Governors University in providing online education learning.

Office of Disaster Recovery
13-15 continues the Office of Disaster Recovery created by Gov. Daniels following severe storms and flooding that occurred in 2012.

1 comment:

rohshack147 said...

Why Pence has chosen to retain David Thomas as the States Inspector General is a mystery to many Indiana Republicans and Democrats. All that can be said is that if Pence doesnt seriously throw out Daniels appointees and grow a spine. Then he desreves whatever hell that these hacks cause him!