Thursday, March 17, 2011

House Approves Change In Appointment Process

Legislation approved by the House today would allow the governor to make all her appointments to each board or commission during her time in office regardless of the life of any specific board or commission member term.

“When the people vote for change, for a new governor, that change can be thwarted by board and commission members who aren’t currently answerable to that governor,” said Martin, R-Norman. “To adequately express the will of the people we need to equip our governor with the tools she needs to advocate and implement her plan for the future of our state.”

Although the legislation was filed before the state Board of Education’s public battle with the State Superintendent Janet Barresi, the incident serves as an example of why the legislation is needed, Martin said.

“The state board was clearly unready for the change brought into office by the people,” Martin said. “Instead of working with the new superintendent, their first act was to try and fight her out of the gate. I believe that if we do not allow governors to implement their agendas, we are doing a disservice to the citizens of Oklahoma. In the case of the state board of education, I think not doing so is doing a disservice to the children of the state."

The bill passed the House by a vote of 60 to 35 and goes next to the Senate.

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