Martinez Humenik: Creating Transparent and Accountable Government for Every Coloradan

Creating Transparent and Accountable Government for Every Coloradan
Senator Beth Martinez Humenik (R-Adams County)
In the past year, Colorado lawmakers have enacted over 15,000 pages of new legislation that affect us all. From small business owners to the hardworking Coloradans they employ, to families in need of health care and their providers, Senate Bill 17-002 seeks to provide some much needed relief to folks across our state who struggle under the burden of new regulations. A top priority this and every session is to streamline government processes in an effort to improve productivity and customer service. The best way to accomplish this is to look at reforms that will truly help constituents as well as the business community. 
Under current regulatory statute, the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) sets the time frame as well as the procedure for the review of rules and regulations by each of the State's Departments to determine effectiveness, make necessary adjustments, accommodate new statutes or to repeal those no longer needed. This is often a complex process which leaves citizens and business community stakeholders in the dark on how to comply or when to to share concerns about the rules that directly affect them. Creating a standard that is efficient and expedient, one that provides improved transparency in government, is the reason for Senate Bill 17-002. My bill will standardize the rule review procedures in an effort to simplify the process for all Department Agencies and DORA. 
Senate Bill 17-002 is a common-sense approach that sets a standard timeframe of every three years for rule updates, repeal or the establishment of new rules once a full rule review has been completed by each Department Agency. By standardizing the rule review process, Colorado will be able to act upon rule modifications in an expedited manner rather than the five, seven or ten-year process currently outlined for State Departments by DORA. As government officials, it is our duty to ensure consistency in best business practice and to streamline processes wherever it makes sense to do so. This legislation will take a crucial step toward parity for State Agencies and all taxpayers. 
With every government agency there is always an expectation of accountability and transparency, in order to help our departments better serve our expectations, my bill will establish a two week public comment period so that every Coloradan with a vested interest has the opportunity to share their thoughts and concerns. By setting a standardized period for stakeholder input in all Departments, we can increase public trust, provide timely rule updates, improve transparency and increase government efficiency. 
DORA will continue to create standardized reports regarding the outcomes of this newly established review process as well as provide all stakeholder input during their annual presentations at the legislative SMART Hearings. These reports will also be easily accessible on each Department Agency website. Creating efficient, effective, and productive government that is accountable to the people it serves requires an ongoing effort by all government officials and State employees. With this new policy, the rule review process will provide expeditious information to stakeholders, cut waste, remove redundancies, promote business growth and innovation in our state by improving the process while trimming costs to taxpayers. Promulgating new rules can take too much time under the current system and can also be costly. Costs get passed down and can be especially burdensome on small businesses as well as Colorado families.
 
I will continue to work tirelessly to repeal or reform outdated policies, repeal or modify statutes, eliminate redundancies that affect small business success, promote taxes that inhibit job growth or are not helpful to hard-working families.
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