BGA: Open Up State’s Public-Private Deals

Chicago’s new privatization law is good road map, says policy coordinator.

The BGA recently testified before a special state legislative hearing on the privatization of government programs and taxpayer-owned assets. The watchdog organization urged lawmakers to make these potentially complex deals open and accountable to the public.

Judy Stevens, BGA Policy Coordinator, presented testimony and answered committee questions on May 12 before the House Special Committee on Public Private Partnerships.

Stevens noted the BGA has no position either in favor or against privatization and public-private partnerships.

However, the BGA voiced serious concerns about the transparency of such transactions both when public-private partnerships are being considered for approval and once they are operating.

The BGA reporting team, which operates separately from the policy unit, recently reported on Rauner’s privatization plans.

In her comments to the committee, Stevens discussed BGA's cooperative effort in 2015 with the City of Chicago to develop the ordinance that now governs how long-term leases of major city assets and services outsourcing proposals are considered, providing sufficient time and transparency to allow for meaningful public involvement. 

Here is her testimony.