Monday, January 28, 2008

Privatization Efforts Hit Road Block in Committee

The big news today was that the privatization efforts hit a road block in the House Government Operations committee, with several questions and concerns raised relative to the approach that has been taken(HB75 and HB76) to review and evaluate privatization efforts for both the state and local governments.

The committee appropriately questioned how one could define "core" governmental service that could then be applied to local jurisdictions that range from Salt Lake City to Vernal, or from Tremonton to St. George. In addition, the ULCT's concerns on these bills were also being echoed by the counties, publicly operated nursing homes, rural hospitals, and several other groups where the notion of a "core" or inherently governmental service becomes problematic.

In response to the concerns that had been expressed, it appears that a major effort to amend the bill is underway. It is likely that the substitute bill will not be required in the local jurisdictions and that they will simply focuses on reconstituting the state privatization policy board to give it more say in the evaluation of privatization efforts at the state level.

Not a bad outcome for local governments. We will see if our hunch is correct in the next few days and let you know as things change.

The next big issue coming down the pipe is the Waste Flow Control Issue and just on its heels is the Justice Court Restructuring Issue. Stay tuned for detailed updates on both.

Until next time... Enjoy.