While Gov. Perdue included “Setting Government Straight” as one of her priorities for the coming year’s budget, this week marks the Civitas Institute’s final installment of its “20 in 2010: A Primer for State Reform” highlighting ways to better clean up state government.
Over the past few years, North Carolina has seen its Speaker of the House and Commissioner of Agriculture sent to prison, a key aide to the Governor indicted, and many more elected officials under investigation. The ethical problems of the state has become so pervasive that according to a January 2010 Civitas poll, 50 percent of voters think the average official in North Carolina tends to be unethical and dishonest versus just 34 percent of voters who believe elected officials are ethical and honest.
While an end to North Carolina’s ethical problems will only come by electing ethical people to office along with dramatically reducing the power and influence of government, there are some significant steps that can be made now to increase transparency in government and political campaigns.