SPRINGFIELD - Do taxpayers have a right to know how their confiscated tax dollars are being spent by local, municipal, state and federal governments? In theory, no sane official would disagree. But in practice, it's a different story. And local officials are laughing off an idea two lawmakers are bantying about to open financial books to their constituents. A story by Watchdog's Benjamin Yount explains:
Two Illinois lawmakers want to require local governments — school districts, cities, counties, townships, water districts, fire protection districts and the like — to be more open with taxpayers about government debt.
But local governments say anyone in Springfield preaching debt management and transparency has, well, a lot of hutzpah.
“That’s hilarious,” said Decatur City Manager Ryan McCrady. “They want to distract from their problems by shifting focus to us? Fine. But make sure to put my bond rating next to the state’s.”
McCrady says Decatur has a far better bond rating than the state of Illinois, which just saw a credit downgrade because of inaction on its massive pension debt.