INCREASE TRANSPARENCY TO MAKE GOVERNMENT MORE ACCOUNTABLE TO TAXPAYERS
Information is one of the most basic and essential requirements for any free nation. Democracy cannot survive and thrive unless citizens have the proper information they need to make informed decisions at the voting booth, and to hold those they elect accountable for their actions.
As the State of Texas’ treasurer, check writer, tax collector, and revenue estimator, Glenn understands that taxpayers have the right to know how their money is being spent. Transparency allows the citizenry to elect officials that will efficiently put our hard working tax dollars into the essential functions of government – good roads, access to water, public safety, and a quality education for our next generation.
Glenn believes that together we can shine a light into every dark corner of government at the state and local levels, so taxpayers are provided the accountability they need and deserve.
Since being elected Comptroller, Glenn has not only built upon, but also expanded the Texas legacy of transparency in government:
Eliminating Inefficient Expenditures
In his role as Comptroller, Glenn has been a relentless fighter for government accountability. By implementing policies to evaluate state agency spending patterns, including contracts and services from new vendors, Glenn has led the effort to identify inefficient spending and save taxpayers over $163 million.
In Glenn’s first year as Comptroller, he launched the Transparency Stars Program, which recognizes local governments for going above and beyond in their transparency efforts. In order to receive the award, Glenn requires that government entities accomplish the following:
- “Open their books not only in their traditional finances, but also in the areas of contracts and procurement, economic development, public pensions and debt obligations.”
- “Provide clear and meaningful financial information not only by posting financial documents, but also through summaries, visualizations, downloadable data and other relevant information.”
Glenn’s efforts to increase transparency were praised by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, which awarded Texas an “A” grade for “Providing Online Access to Government Spending Data”.
Efforts to increase transparency in government can be traced back to Glenn’s service in the State Legislature, where he sponsored House Bill 3430. The bill created a searchable online database providing public access to all state government expenditures, allowing citizens to hold government accountable.
The U.S. PIRG went on to state “Texas’ local spending transparency effort is particularly noteworthy because it includes special districts… which are not included in state and local government budgets… Texas also promotes local transparency through its “Transparency Stars” program, which rewards exemplary local spending transparency, including disclosure of special district budgets.”
In the first year of the program, Glenn’s efforts have resulted in 14 government municipalities, including 7 cities and 5 Independent School Districts, increasing transparency and earning Transparency Stars.