Rep. Greg VanWoerkom, chair of House Appropriations General Government Subcommittee, issued the following statement today after Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson testified before the House Oversight Committee:
“It was refreshing to see Secretary of State Benson finally appear before a committee of the Legislature today. It’s part of her job as an elected official to be transparent and accountable to the people of Michigan, and communicating with the Legislature is part of that responsibility.
“Secretary Benson spent much of today’s testimony blaming issues within her department on the state budget. Yet this year, Secretary Benson turned down seven invitations to appear before the General Government subcommittee to discuss her department’s budget. She has a standing invitation to testify at any time. Today Secretary Benson said she is always willing to discuss her budget and work in a productive way with legislators – yet she failed to do so with our committee.
“The General Government subcommittee oversees multiple budgets for nine state departments. The conversations we had with other department directors were insightful and productive, and they helped our committee craft better budget plans for the people of Michigan.”