Joyce testifies in support of abolishing Governor's Council

Senator Brian A. Joyce testified today at a hearing of the Judiciary Committee in support of S.15, a proposal for a legislative amendment to the Constitution to provide for the abolition of the Governor’s Council.

Citing a need for further reform in government processes and eliminating unneeded expenditures, Senator Joyce urged the members of the Judiciary Committee to report favorably on the bill. The proposal, which Joyce filed this session, would eliminate the need for the Governor’s Council by transferring their duties to the Senate and the House.

“It’s time to get rid of this outdated vestige of an earlier era,” said Senator Joyce. “We need to show the taxpayers that we are committed to delivering core government services as cost effectively, efficiently and transparently as possible.”

Currently, the Governor’s Council serves as the last stop for nominees for judicial appointments. Prior to appearing before the Council, nominees are vetted by the Judicial Nominating Committee, and submitted to the Governor for his approval. In his testimony, Senator Joyce stated that the Governor’s Council costs taxpayers more than half a million dollars a year, yet from 2007-2010, had only 4 meetings that lasted longer than 20 minutes. Furthermore, out of 92 nominees that appeared before the Council during that time period, 90 were approved, and 2 withdrew.

If the bill passes favorably from the Judiciary Committee, it will need to pass through two consecutive Constitutional Conventions in order to appear before voters as a general election ballot question.