Local Sunlight


Keeping track of congressional information starts at the local level, and blogs do a great job of informing people about what is happening in their own backyard. I have been reading local blogs for quite a while and have been very impressed with the coverage on local ethics issues and congressional information. So I would like to highlight every week some blogs that do a great job covering issues that deal with transparency, ethics, and corruption.

In Alabama, Flashpoint describes a recent earmark that funded buying 20,000 smoke detectors for residents in Madison County, and questions its necessity.

Arizona’s Espresso Pundit and BlogforArizona.com both agree that the best way to make public announcements from government agencies is not through a newspaper but that Arizona should put them online on a searchable government Web site.

Georgia Porkbusters gave a rundown of who in the Georgia delegation requested earmarks in the upcoming defense appropriations package.

South Carolina has a new government watchdog blog, the Palmetto Truth Squad. Their goal is to find “verifiable examples of waste, mismanagement and fraud in South Carolina state and local government.”

New York Rochester Turning is reporting that the New York State Ethics Commission recently released an advisory opinion on the use of state aircraft for political purposes.

In Alaska, Sen. Ted Stevens has taken up quite a bit of blog space recently. The Anchorage Daily News takes some space to talk about the earmark controversies surrounding Alaska’s congressional delegation. Here Sen. Stevens did an interview with the Daily News editorial board. If you go to the bottom you can see his, rather interesting, response when questioned about his legal controversies.

These are just some highlights of what is going on at the state level. Please feel free to contact me (at nthompson at sunlightfoundation dot com) if you have any tips on what is going on locally. I am specifically in search of more local political news blogs in Alaska, so if anyone knows of any, please let me know.