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Statement of Arizona PIRG Public Interest Advocate Serena Unrein on the final report of the Arizona Commission on Privatization and Efficiency (COPE):
“Before any of the suggestions from the Arizona Commission on Privatization and Efficiency are implemented, it is important that there is a thorough and public vetting process of these recommendations.
"If the Governor chooses to privatize any of the functions currently performed by the state government, increased transparency and accountability will be essential to ensure that the public and their tax dollars are protected.
"In any privatization process, there should be complete transparency to ensure proper public vetting of privatization proposals. This includes making all information gained during the privatization process available to the public, allotting proper time for public hearings, and ample time to review a proposed agreement before final approval.
"Companies looking to perform functions currently performed by the state are doing so because they think they’ll make a profit; it isn’t a risk-free venture for the public. If Arizona chooses to privatize any of the state’s functions, there need to be safeguards to protect the public. Without adequate oversight, there is the potential for waste and abuse when public funds are given to private entities.”
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