The Senate is taking steps to make its confirmation hearings more open to the public and has begun by putting information about executive nominations online.
The public can access the information and track the confirmation process by visiting www.azsenate.gov and clicking on “Search Senate Confirmations,” the office of Senate President Tim Bee said Feb. 8.
“The confirmation process is a Senate responsibility that can be as important as passing legislation,” Bee said in a statement. “It has been my experience that senators have received far less input from the public on these critical decisions then we do on pending legislation. The website helps us open up this aspect of government to the public.”
Bee told the ~Arizona Capitol Times~ that the confirmation process is already open to the public but in a limited way.
“Arizona has been very progressive about opening up our process. Over time we have opened our caucuses. We have gone live on the internet. We have our documents made public through the internet,” he said.
“There are many confirmations that the Senate has and it’s a process that I personally believe has not been fully opened or has received the attention necessary… It is an important function of what the Senate does in Arizona,” he said.
The hearings, since they occur in committee meetings, would also be televised and broadcasted on the web, according to the Senate staff.