State Government Accountability an Ongoing Challenge

The State Journal - Is state government doing some things right and some things wrong? Is it too large or too small? Read

"We don't know because we don't hold government accountable," said Robin Capehart, former secretary of the state Department of Tax and Revenue. Capehart is now president of West Liberty University.

Ted Boettner, executive director of the West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy, said compared to other states, it is hard to get information about small-area tax collections and other information from West Virginia state government. That makes it hard for the public to decide whether tax credits for industry work or whether the Promise scholarship program is accomplishing what it was supposed to.

"Is it working? We have no idea," Boettner said. "It's almost like we won't want to know."

Alas, there are some attempts at accountability. The Legislative Auditor's Performance Evaluation and Research Division is an example.

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