Yesterday, the editor of The Nevada Globe, Megan Barth, took over the microphone for veteran radio host Kevin Wall on AM 670, KMZQ, and had the opportunity to interview state controller-elect Andy Matthews. Matthews won a decisive midterm victory over Democratic challenger Ellen Spiegel and shared his vision for the controller’s office, an office that is often not understood in how the office plays a leading roll in the fiscal management of the Silver state and how the office will now play a leading roll, under his direction, for responsible and accountable government.
Career politicians have been hiding how Nevadans' tax dollars are spent for far too long. I'm running for Nevada Controller to expose wasteful government spending and finally give taxpayers the transparency & accountability they deserve. It's time for a haircut in Carson City. pic.twitter.com/SLqhMyl9AI
— Andy Matthews (@AndyMatthewsNV) August 8, 2022
On the campaign trail and in our brief interview, Matthews promised to increase transparency on how the government spends tax payer dollars and prioritize the visibility on how the state government is spending the billions of dollars received under the CARES act.
Matthews stated, “we need to vastly improve how Nevadans can access this information on-line and greatly improve the accessibility and increase the way we provide the information to better inform conversations and debates on how government should increase or decrease spending. It’s hard to have an informed discussion when we don’t know what we are doing with the current money. I believe Nevada tax payers have every right to know how their money is spent and where it is going. In these hard economic times, Nevadans deserve, now more than ever, that government is going to be responsible with their money.”
One report Matthews plans to revive is former state controller Ron Knecht’s annual state spending report. “We are going to find a way to bring back Ron Knecht’s state spending report which provides context and in-depth analysis of the return on investment on government spending. For example, if we increase spending on education, what impact is that having on student achievement?” Matthews explained.
As reported by The Globe, Nevada’s state budget has ballooned to $11.4 billion causing Governor-elect Lombardo to publicly state that he sees no need for tax increases. Matthews concurred: “The state is going to be very flush with revenue for the short-term future. I was glad to hear Lombardo offer his take–which I share. The state does not need a tax increase. It is going to be really important to resist the urge and push from lawmakers to use all this new money to grow government and create new programs. That is a risky thing to do. I will strongly advise against it and push against it. In these flush times, we create all these government programs and in a down turn we will not have the revenue to cover them. Then, we end up in a situation where lawmakers will the go to tax payers claiming they need more money. The most important thing we can do is not use this money as an excuse to grow government and expand our financial obligations down the road. This is not the responsible thing to do. I will be an advocate for fiscal responsibility and restraint.”
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