Fong introduces transparency package

Assemblyman Vince Fong, on the first day of the new legislative session, introduced a legislative packaged aimed at empowering Californians to hold government agencies accountable, while also ensuring transparency to taxpayers.

Fong’s staff described the package as a common-sense approach to bringing the state government up to 21st-century technology standards and allowing the public to better interact with their government officials. The package includes:

• AB 62 — Requires all state agencies and department budgets to be easily accessible online, so that the public can see line item by line item, how each governmental department spends its budget.

• AB 63 — Establishes a rating system that allows members of the public to rate their experiences with a particular state department or agency, similar to many of the smartphone applications that allow users to rate experiences with a particular establishment.

• AB 64 — Establishes an independent audit structure so that all major state projects that cost more than $1 million are reviewed and reports are made public.

“For too long, we have tolerated a government that is stuck decades in the past,” said Fong. “Just by utilizing the technology we use in our daily lives, we can instantly bring government closer to the people whom we serve every day. We need to make government more transparent and accountable, which is what these critical reforms seek to accomplish.”

The bills are currently in the Assembly Rules Committee, where they will be referred to the appropriate policy committees for hearings. Fong represents the 34th Assembly District, which includes the Indian Wells Valley.

Story First Published: 2018-12-07