Radio Column

Asa Arkansas's Governor

Efficiencies and Model T’s

02/24/2017

Column Transcript

Several years after Ford Motor Company was founded, the Model T hit the market in 1908. It captured what Henry Ford wanted for the everyday American – an affordable, reliable and efficient automobile.

To keep up with the high demand, Ford revolutionized his production process, which allowed the company to build vehicles faster and keep costs lower. He was innovative, efficient and consistently worked to meet the needs of consumers. By the late 1920’s, Ford Motor Company had become the largest manufacturer in the world, having produced more than 15 million Model T’s.

Now, I’ve never built a Model T, but I have worked to improve the performance and efficiency of state government. Just as Henry Ford focused on producing his autos efficiently, today, we turn our focus on creating leaner government services in Arkansas.

In 2015, the Arkansas legislature voted to consolidate four state agencies at my request. Already, these moves have helped our agencies streamline services and better utilize taxpayer dollars. Over the next five years, we’re expected to save around $10 million. These changes are yielding big savings – and contributing to a new generation of ideas and efficiencies in state government. This year, I proposed three additional reforms:

First, transferring the Energy Office from the Arkansas Department of Economic Development to the Department of Environmental Quality in order to more effectively implement our energy programs.

Secondly, moving the Office of Health Information Technology from being a stand-alone agency to the Department of Health.

And finally, transferring the War Memorial Stadium Commission to the Department of Parks and Tourism, giving the stadium access to more resources and new marketing opportunities for revitalization.

Thanks to the work of the General Assembly, these three efficiency measures have passed and will soon become law. I’m pleased to see our state’s lawmakers and leaders coming together and working smarter for the people we serve. Reducing the costs of government and being more efficient is something we work on every day.

In the words of Henry Ford, “Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.” When we work together, there’s nothing our state can’t accomplish. It’s not a Model T, but it’s a model that’s reliable, efficient and makes state government work well for everyone.