Plugging Up Pork Spending

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Gov. Riley has signed an executive order prohibiting state agencies from being used to funnel money to special projects for legislators.

Riley said at a news conference Friday that his order puts an end to the process known as “pass-through pork.”

Riley said he wants Alabama taxpayers to be able to look at the state budgets and know how money is being spent. The governor also sent a memo to cabinet members and agency heads instructing them to refuse to release funding for legislators' projects that are not identified in the state budgets.

Riley's order followed reports that Senator Roger Bedford had channeled $3.1 million through the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs for projects in his northwest Alabama district.

Riley called such practices misleading. The governor was joined at the news conference by House Speaker Seth Hammett and Senate President Pro Tem Lowell Barron.