Providence, RI - Newly elected Representatives Lyle, Nardone, and Place will be introducing two pieces of legislation that would establish an Office of Inspector General and a constitutional amendment granting the governor the power to utilize a line-item veto in the state budget.
“Rhode Island has been fighting for an Inspector General for years. Now, with our state facing one of the worst budget shortfalls in recent history, we need to take action,” said Representative Nardone.
“These are good reform bills that Rhode Islanders have wanted for years. They would go a long way to ensure the public has access to what happens inside the building,” said Representative Place.
The Office of Inspector General would serve as an independent organization designed to investigate and root out any allegations of abuse, fraud, waste, or mismanagement of public funds at the federal, state, and local level. The inspector general will have the power to subpoena records and testimony from government agencies, quasi-public bodies, and contractors receiving public funds. If the inspector general’s office discovers fraud or abuse, they will work with the attorney general to file civil or criminal charges.
“The House of Representatives needs to have checks and balances. Our current and future governors should have the ability to go through the proposed budget with a fine-toothed comb. The last minute and closed-door budget debates must come to an end. If the governor vetoes the entire budget, it’s going to be overridden immediately. With a line item veto, it becomes a public discussion about that narrow issue, and the governor might be able to prevail,” said Representative Lyle.