Republican Lt. Gov.-elect Dan Patrick announced yesterday (Thursday, Jan. 15) he has appointed 56 state business leaders to six new citizen advisory panels who will advise him on a variety of policy areas, including water, taxes, economic development and forecasting, transportation and energy.
Texans for Public Justice, a liberal ethics watchdog group, noted 77 percent of the advisory members financially backed his campaign for lieutenant governor. Other members have backed Patrick since his first campaign for state senate in 2006, a position he held until his election as lieutenant governor this past November.
Nearly half of the advisory members live in the Dallas/Fort Worth region. Many are also among the Patrick campaign’s donors.
Dallas’ Roy Bailey will chair the advisory board’s committees.
Advisory group meetings would not be open to the public but Patrick said he will acknowledge legislation brought by the groups, according to the Austin American-Statesman. He also anticipates advisory board members to testify before committees.
“Endowing a handful of corporate titans with the power to write laws behind closed doors is the ultimate form of government privatization,” said Craig McDonald, the group’s director. “If you thought cronyism and corruption were out of hand under the [outgoing Gov.] Perry regime, just hang on! The worst is yet to come.”
Major Patrick contributors and advisory board members:
Asterisk indicates Dallas/Fort Worth area resident
*Roy Bailey, Chairman of Advisory Committees
Economic & Workforce Development:
Gene Powell, Chairman
Hon. Kent Hance
Jodie L. Jiles
Energy/Oil and Gas:
*T. Boone Pickens, Chairman
S. Javaid Anwar
Wil VanLoh, Jr.
Ned Holmes, Chairman
Arch “Beaver” Aplin
*Jere Thompson, Jr.
Jack Wood, Chairman
*Ralph Ellis, Jr.