If you woke up on Saturday morning and were not $600 million richer from the lottery, take heart. The Massachusetts Joint Committee on State Administration and Regulatory Oversight has given a favorable nod to pending legislation that could pay state residents up to $10,000 for new ideas that save taxpayers money.
The proposal, sponsored by State Representative Dan Winslow (R-Norfolk), who represents Medfield, amends the existing Suggestion Awards Board law to allow cash awards to all Massachusetts residents who propose money-saving ideas. The current law limits cash awards only to state employees. Awards are funded as a percentage of money saved by new ideas, up to a $10,000 per idea limit.
"The citizens of the Commonwealth are the best source of common sense in Massachusetts," said Winslow. "This proposal will encourage them to suggest new ideas to save money and prevent waste and fraud."
Under existing law, state employees can submit money-saving ideas to the state's Suggestions Awards Board and receive bonus pay if their idea is accepted. Under Winslow's plan, the existing law would be expanded so that all Massachusetts residents could submit their ideas for more efficient state government. The proposal was given a favorable recommendation and referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means, which is chaired by State Representative Brian Dempsey (D-Haverill). People interested in supporting the proposal can call Dempsey's State House office at (617) 722-2990 to urge the Committee's approval of House Bill 2601.