Modernization Committee’s First Set of Recommendations an Important Step Towards a More Efficient, Transparent Governing Body in Government Reform

The following is a statement from BPC Action Executive Director Michele Stockwell:

“BPC Action applauds the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress on the release of its first set of recommendations, which aim to improve the efficiency and transparency of the legislative process. If implemented, these common-sense proposals would have a significant impact on creating a more streamlined, accessible lawmaking process.

Outdated technology has made it difficult for Members to do their work and for the public to understand and access what is happening in their own government. Establishing a standardized format for drafting, viewing, and publishing legislation and providing for real-time comparison to current law would benefit both Members and the public. The proposals would also enable the public to easily search committee votes adding a level of transparency to Members’ committee work. These simple reforms would make it easier for Americans to engage with legislation affecting their day-to-day lives.

Additionally, the Modernization Committee has proposed developing a centralized electronic HUB that would list all authorized program expiration dates by committee. Such a list is long overdue. For years, Congress has paid little attention to reviewing and reauthorizing existing federal programs, and the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Commission on Political Reform has long called on committees to focus more on reauthorizations.  A central list of program expiration dates will enable committees to better focus their agendas and target their oversight activities.

These recommendations address both the needs of the chamber and the American public by bringing greater efficiency and transparency to the lawmaking process.
They also signal a significant first step in bipartisan efforts to modernize the institution to work better on behalf of the American people. We encourage leadership and individual Members to support these proposals and ensure that the legislative process is as effective and accessible as possible.”