FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 11/17/2014
SIMMONS FILES HB 280 TO INCREASE GOVERNMENT TRANSPARENCY
Bill Increases Transparency for Projects Funded Using the State Water Implementation Fund
CARROLLTON – State Representative Ron Simmons filed House Bill 280 to require information regarding the use of the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT) to be posted on the Texas Water Development Board's (TWDB) website.
During the 83rd Legislative Session, Rep. Ron Simmons and Rep. Giovanni Capriglione worked together on an amendment to House Bill 4 that required TWDB to post detailed information to their website concerning projects funded by SWIFT. The amendment was adopted in the House version of the bill, but was not included in the final version signed into law by Governor Perry on May 28, 2013.
"I filed HB 280 to ensure the transparency requirements accepted by the House are included in the implementation of SWIFT," said Simmons. "HB 280 will require the trust company, Texas Treasury Safekeeping Trust Company, and the Texas Water Development Board to post information about water plan investments and projects on their respective websites."
Among other reporting requirements, House Bill 280 would require the following information to be posed online: (a) the expenses incurred in investing money in the fund; (b) the rate of return on money invested in the fund; and (c) a description of the point system for prioritizing projects and the number of points awarded by TWDB for each project.
"Last session we made monumental progress in developing sufficient water infrastructure and ensuring a sustainable water supply for future Texas generations with the passage of HB 4," added Simmons. "HB 280 increases transparency and accountability to help make sure taxpayer dollars are used appropriately and efficiently for this purpose."
Rep. Capriglione is set to sign on as a joint-author of House Bill 280.