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Issue Position: Transparency and Performance

Issue Position

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Date:
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Gina understands that government must work for the people, and the critical role it plays in improving the lives of its citizens. She knows from personal experience that hope is needed most not in good times, but in tough ones. By demanding transparency and delivering results, Gina will work to restore the public's faith in our government, as well as citizens' hope that their lives will improve. Accountability and results will be just as important to Gina in her role as General Treasurer as they were in her work at Point Judith Capital.

Gina believes in government and the powerful role that it can play to improve society and the lives of individual citizens. Effective government not only provides real help for people, it also gives them hope that better days are around the corner. Gina believes that transparency and accountability for effective services are the best ways to restore people's faith in government.

Gina understands the importance of delivering on performance expectations. While working to help the management teams of her start-up companies succeed, Gina holds them accountable for results, requiring them to set and meet ambitious targets, and to justify their investments and key strategies. In turn, she has been held accountable by her investors. Gina will bring a sense of urgency regarding performance to the Office of General Treasurer. As General Treasurer, Gina's priorities will include:

Ensuring transparency on state spending.

Gina will take seriously the responsibility of the General Treasurer to sign each check the state issues, and to ensure performance for those funds. By building on existing efforts to make state spending more transparent, Gina will ensure that citizens have easy access to records of state spending and an understanding of how all tax dollars are spent. She will work with other state agencies and the legislature to create a plan to expand this to cover the entire state government. Gina also will work to include accruals and other accounting adjustments so that information provided can be compared easily to the state budget.

Serving as a Watchdog to Avoid Wasteful Spending

Gina believes that the General Treasurer's office should play an essential "watchdog" role in state spending by investigating and publicizing spending that is wasteful and working to cut red tape, particularly for businesses eager to expand. The General Treasurer's office is uniquely suited to provide analysis, insight and critique into spending efficiency and economic impact. She will work with local non-profits, the RIEDC and the office of the Auditor General to create an annual barometer of government performance. This performance review will highlight examples of best practices and worst practices in state spending, as well as highlight the actual impact of key pieces of legislation from the previous year on the jobs and lives of Rhode Islanders.

Establishing Pay-to-Play Rules for Investment Managers

Gina will advocate for the expeditious adoption of new regulations designed to prevent "pay-to-play" activities in the management of state retirement plan assets. Gina believes these rules are not only a necessary bulwark against the corruptive practices found in other states, but more importantly, they ensure trust in the office and establish that investment performance is the predominant criteria in any decision-making. Specifically, Gina encourages the Securities and Exchange Commission (and should it delay, the R.I. General Assembly) to adopt its proposed regulations, which are modeled on the successful rules operating in the municipal securities market. This regulation, among other things, prohibits firms whose employees have made political contributions to officials (or candidates for such positions) who oversee pension funds from receiving an investment mandate for a period of two years. Gina believes that these regulations strike the right balance in their scope and reporting requirements to achieve their goals, without creating disincentives for top-performing managers to avoid seeking investment mandates.


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