Wednesday, February 18, 2009


Gov. Bill Ritter announced the creation today of an accountability and oversight board to ensure that funds Colorado receives from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, signed in Denver yesterday, are spent effectively and transparently.
"The recovery act presents an extraordinary opportunity to strengthen Colorado's economy and create new jobs all across the state," Gov. Ritter. "With this opportunity also comes a need for additional monitoring to ensure the funds are invested effectively, efficiently and wisely, and with an unprecedented level of oversight, transparency and accountability.
"I have asked this distinguished group of Coloradans to join the accountability board to support the work of my administration in the expenditure of these funds," Gov. Ritter said. "We have a sacred responsibility to taxpayers that this will be an open process. This board will establish various methods for the public to monitor where their money is going and how it is being spent."
The board will be chaired by Don Elliman, director of the Colorado Office of Economic Development, and composed of public- and private-sector leaders from across the state, including:
State Treasurer Cary Kennedy
Secretary of State Bernie Buescher
State Sen. Moe Keller, chair of the legislature's Joint Budget Committee
State Rep. Don Marostica, member of the Joint Budget Committee
Ray Baker, partner, Gold Crown Companies
Reeves Brown, executive director, Club 20
Taryn Edwards, president, Associated General Contractors of Colorado
Robert Gibson, deputy director, Colorado WINS
Sandy Gutierrez, president/CEO, Pueblo Latino Chamber of Commerce
Tony Hernandez, director, Division of Local Government, Colo. Dept. of Local Affairs
Andre Pettigrew, director, Denver Office of Economic Development
Richard Truly, former director of NREL and former administrator of NASA
Gov. Ritter's budget and policy directors and several Cabinet members will support the board.
The board has already created a website (, modeled after the national, and an e-mail address ( The board also will establish other methods for the public to monitor and hold state actions accountable, including the regular publication of reports and frequent website updates with detailed and timely information about bid processes and the progression of recovery funds.
The board intends to quickly identify and address the numerous pending questions about requirements, obligations and procedures that surround the distribution of recovery act funds. Answers to many of these questions will not be known until the appropriate federal agencies establish their own rules.
Working with state agencies, contractors and citizens, the board will create rules and procedures where none exist. Members of the board will also hold meetings around the state to gather direct input from local residents and communities.
Several other states are establishing offices, task forces and coordinators to oversee the distribution of recovery funds. Colorado's effort will seek to draw on the best practices from those other states.
"This recovery act represents an important step forward for our economy," Gov. Ritter said. "We must keep faith with taxpayers through effective spending of these funds and by closely overseeing those expenditures. Transparency and accountability will help us accomplish those goals."