Legislation that will help Oklahomans see exactly how their tax dollars are being spent is now on its way to Gov. Brad Henry. Senate Bill 1, the “Taxpayer Transparency Act,” by Sen. Randy Brogdon, calls for the creation of an online database to show exactly how state tax dollars are spent. The measure was given final approval by the Senate on Wednesday and by the House on Thursday. Both chambers approved the bill unanimously.
“I believe this is one of the most important bills ever passed for openness in government,” said Brogdon, R-Owasso. “We should make it as easy as possible to track exactly how their tax dollars are being appropriated, because those dollars come from the citizens of Oklahoma. Senate Bill 1 will make that happen.”
Brogdon said the program would be modeled on a federal law by U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn which will allow citizens to track the use of tax dollars. Under SB 1, the Office of State Finance will be in charge of maintaining a searchable Website to let citizens see how state dollars are spent.
“The state budget this year is $7 billion dollars and many taxpayers would be astounded if they knew how their money was being spent. This bill will help bring accountability of the politicians front and center to their constituents,” Brogdon said. “Anytime there is openness in government, the elected officials feel the pressure to do the right thing. The ‘Taxpayer Transparency Act’ is a check on the politicians and a huge benefit to the taxpayers of Oklahoma.”