LePage Wants to Create New State Agency

Posted on September 5, 2011. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , |

The Kennebec Journal is reporting today that the governor wants to “create a new program to oversee policy, management” along the lines of “secret shoppers” he employed at Marden’s.

“Whether it is an inspector general, or an office of management and budget, which is what we are trying to implement now, we are going down that path,” LePage said last month. “We need that type of office.”He said when he was manager of Marden’s Surplus & Salvage, they used “secret shoppers” to measure employee performance and to check on whether stores were implementing policies. The shoppers were company employees that posed as shoppers and developed valuable data for company management.

“We need that in state government,” he said. “We need to know what is really happening.”

Jonathan Nass, a senior policy adviser for LePage, is working on the details of the proposal that will go to the Legislature in January.

(It always comes back to “Marden’s = Maine” with this guy, doesn’t it?)

More from Bangor Daily News regarding Nass’ vision:

 

Nass said the governor strongly believes he needs a better tool to assess the way various programs are being managed, both within agencies and those programs and policies that transcend a single agency. He said unlike the legislature’s Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability, the new office would look at programs in a more systematic way, and not “the issue of the day” that OPEGA probes.Nass said an inspector general type of function is needed in an organization with thousands of workers and hundreds of managers in programs providing a wide range of services and functions.

“Too often, under management, mid-level management, are going to report up good news,” he said. “This is a way for the governor toconnect directly with the front lines of government and do it in a way that you are going to get an honest and first hand account of how government is actually working.”

Anyone else read “connect directly” as “bypass legislature”?

Here are my questions and I am sure others will have more:

 

  • Isn’t this an overstep by the Executive Branch for power as it is not balanced by the Legislature? And as such, is this heading to the third branch (Judicial) to decide whether or not this represents a violation of Maine’s constitution?(Of course until the specifics of the Governor’s scheme are known, these are moot points/ questions)

     

  • Doesn’t this sound WAY too much like an Orwellian “Big Brother” scenario? And without oversight, a recipe for corruption and bribery? 
  • Is he going to hire a bunch of James O’Keefe wanna-bees to be his “Secret Santa” goons, er, thugs, er, militia? 
  • When these SS goons inevitably “find” laws or problems that they report to Da Boss, under what legal authority can LePage revoke these laws? Will the governor be using this agency to find people who are not GOP/ Tea Party faithful and replace them with “his kind” of people? The sort that share his politics and will work to elect only Republicans in 2012 and beyond?Lest we forget, via former LePage communications director Dan Demeritt we got this insightful and chilling email:

     

    “I’d like to connect the week before Christmas with you and key staff.  If you are not in town, we can hopefully get some of your staffs putting together some of the resources / information we are going to need to get rolling.  Once we take office, Paul will put 11,000 bureaucrats to work getting Republicans re-elected.

     

  • How much is this new agency, its people and set-up costs (communications hardware, vehicles, office space, etc) going to set the Maine taxpayers back? Doesn’t this need to be looked at by Appropriations first?(And don’t even TRY to tell us that this boondoggle will be off-set by savings!)

    As we saw in Florida, Tea Party Governor Rick Scott has wasted $178 MILLION to get back $60,000.

    Maine can’t afford to see LePage make similar catastrophic fiscal blunders as his southern counterpart has!

     

  • Doesn’t this give the governor a “de facto”, retroactive  line item veto on legislation, when the Maine Constitution only allows such vetoes for spending items? Isn’t this a violation of our state’s Constitution?Okay, I’m done. So what do you all think of this proposed idea?

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