New Ethics Commission leader seeks better campaign-reporting software
BY BARBARA HOBEROCK World Capitol Bureau
Friday, February 08, 2013
2/08/13 at 6:11 AM
OKLAHOMA CITY - The software that candidates use to file campaign reports should be replaced, the new leader of the state Ethics Commission told a Senate panel Thursday.
The Ethics Commission recently hired Oklahoma City attorney Lee Slater to run the agency after the resignation of longtime Executive Director Marilyn Hughes.
The agency's general counsel and investigator also left.
Slater appeared before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government and Transportation to discuss the commission's budget request and performance.
He said the current software that candidates use to report donations and expenses contains several glitches.
Slater said he is still reviewing the budget request and did not have a cost estimate for replacing the software.
Ethics Commission rules should be thoroughly examined and very likely rewritten, he said.
In addition, the agency's website needs significant work, he told the committee.
Slater said the agency could perform its mission with fewer than the seven employees it has had in the past but that those employees would have to be highly professional and compensated competitively.
With a smaller permanent staff, the commission could rely on temporary personnel during peak periods, he said.
In her State of the State address Monday, Gov. Mary Fallin proposed increasing the agency's budget by $125,000 to $713,129, an increase of 21.3 percent.
At some point, the commission might need to look at increasing the fees paid by lobbyists and political action committees, but it will always be more reliant on legislative appropriations than fees, Slater said.
Original Print Headline: New campaign-reporting software sought
Barbara Hoberock 405-528-2465