Lincoln County’s state representative will enter the next session of the General Assembly in a new leadership position.
N.C. House Speaker Thom Tillis, R-Mecklenburg, recently announced his appointments to chair various subcommittees of the House Appropriations Committee, with N.C. Rep. Jason Saine, R-Lincoln, to head up the Appropriations Subcommittee on Information Technology.
“The House Appropriations subcommittees do complex policy work for budget preparation and have significant influence over how the House sets spending priorities,” Tillis said in a statement. “The leaders of these subcommittees have a responsibility to budget efficiently, and I am confident they will do so.”
Saine, a self-professed techie, told the Times-News last week that Tillis included him on a number of IT issues during the last session and in the interim.
“With IT touching every aspect of government, it is important that we move effectively into the future with a planned strategy that takes into consideration both costs and innovation,” Saine said. “I am proud that Speaker Tillis has that kind of confidence in me and my abilities.”
Saine also believes his experience with issues relating to IT was a likely factor in his being picked to chair the subcommittee.
“My background in information technologies certainly played a role in my selection,” he added.
“It is something that I am very interested in, both from a budget issue but also how state government communicates with taxpayers. I think this is a unique opportunity to work with a new administration and find ways to explore new efficiencies.”
Twelve members will make up the committee, which will also include a number of other Appropriations subcommittee chairs.
“The collaboration is essentially built into the committee, and hopefully I can serve as a unifying force that can tie in the various interests,” he added.
Regarding his spending priorities as chair, Saine stressed the importance of cutting costs while improving efficiency.
” … I believe that moving forward, we must work with the new administration to reduce costs to taxpayers by utilizing the technologies we have and seeking to make use of emerging technologies and cost-sharing initiatives,” he said.
“We must reduce replication in order to bring costs down and think outside of the box when it comes to the IT budget.”
Saine will also serve as the vice chair of Commerce and Job Development, and he noted that he has a number of ideas for how to create better opportunities to bring and maintain business in North Carolina.
“I want to make sure that Lincoln County will be allowed to compete on a level playing field,” he added.
Saine’s other committee assignments include as a member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government, Appropriations, Education, Election Law, Judiciary, Judiciary Subcommittee C, Rules, Transportation and the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Emergency Management.
“It is also an honor to be selected to chair a committee after just a half-term in the General Assembly,” Saine noted.
“I think this, and my other committee assignments, will continue Lincoln County being well represented in Raleigh.”