- Associated Press - Wednesday, November 1, 2017

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A panel created by Republican Gov. Eric Greitens says nearly 450 gubernatorial appointments to boards and commissions should be eliminated as part of efforts to shrink government, the governor announced Wednesday when revealing details of the group’s new report.

Missouri’s more than 200 boards and commissions have a variety of roles from creating safety regulations to promoting the state’s industries. But according to the report from the Boards and Commissions Task Force, more than three-fourths of them have members whose terms have expired and 5 percent can’t meet because there are not enough members for a quorum.

The task force found that some boards and commissions have similar purposes, such as the Board of Certification of Interpreters and the Missouri State Committee of Interpreters. The panel recommended combining those two.

Other boards no longer meet or function. The report mentioned an agricultural panel that hasn’t met in seven years. Another panel, the Professional Services Payment Committee, was created in 2007 to focus on Medicaid services but has never met, according to the report.

“Government is too big, too slow, and works too poorly,” Greitens said Wednesday in a statement. “With these recommendations, the task force took an important first step to shrink the size of government and make it work better for people.”

Greitens, through an April executive order, created the Boards and Commissions Task Force to address bloated bureaucracy. One of its leaders is Lt. Gov. Mike Parson.

Because the Missouri Legislature created many of the boards and commissions, the task force recommended lawmakers take action to reduce them. The panel also advised legislators against creating new boards and commissions through laws.

Task force members also suggested lawmakers or Greitens take action to reduce the fees that some of the boards and commissions collect.

The financial impact from reducing board and commission appointments was not immediately clear. The report didn’t include details.

The offices of the governor and lieutenant governor did not immediately return messages seeking details about potential costs or savings.

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