DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM/KRLD) – One state lawmaker is taking a look at how the North Texas Tollway Authority (NTTA) operates. State Representative Rafael Anchia, D-Dallas, has filed a bill to bring the NTTA under Sunset Review, which tries to identify and eliminate duplication and inefficiency in state government agencies.
“Does this state agency or entity need to exist?” asked Anchia. “It may be entirely possible that we need to transfer the NTTA over to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), so that there’s not a redundancy of bureaucracy or function.”
Anchia says he has long been concerned about claims that the NTTA has a lack of diversity on their board, a history of overcharging for fees and has a practice of cronyism.
“We have a process in state statute that allows the Sunset Commission to look at these entities, to audit them, to exercise some oversight, to make sure that they’re doing their job,” Anchia said of his bills’ purpose. “And frankly I think as a state legislator those are questions that need to be asked.”
NTTA Spokesperson Michael Ray confirms that a copy of the bill has been received and is being reviewed. “We’ll work with the bills’ author, Representative Anchia, as is appropriate,” said Ray.
The Texas Legislature created the Sunset Advisory Commission in 1977. The 12-member Commission reviews the policies and programs of more than 150 government agencies.
Anchia says the Commission has a very specific purpose of, “Looking at a state agency or a state created entity to determine whether or not it’s continuing to fulfill its mission and doing so in an effective manner that is responsive to taxpayers and stakeholders.”
Since 1978, the Sunset Advisory Commission has abolished 58 agencies and consolidated another 12.