2Day in #OpenGov 10/14/2011


Policy Fellow Matt Rumsey wrote this post.

It’s Friday, which means this is your last chance this week to read about transparency-related news items, congressional committee hearings, transparency-related bills introduced in Congress, and transparency-related events.

News Roundup:

  • The British parliament voted down a proposal to ban the use of Twitter while in the House of Commons. Opponents of the legislation rely on Twitter to stay up to date and communicate with their constituents. (AP/Yahoo)
  • Code for America has announced their city and fellow selections for 2012. The program brings together local governments and developers to collaborate on innovative IT projects. (Government Technology)
  • YouTown, a mobile app aimed at connecting citizens with their local governments, is now available for iPhone and Android devices. (govfresh)
  • The USAjobs relaunch is continuing to struggle. The site is still experiencing major issues, but signs of hope are beginning to emerge. (Federal Computer Week)
Campaign Finance
  • President Obama raised more than $40 million for his reelection campaign in the third quarter, outstripping the entire Republican field. But, it remains to be seen how long this advantage will hold, or how much effect it will have. (Washington Post)
  • Michelle Bachmann announced that she received donations from 92,000 individuals last quarter, but refused to cite a specific fundraising total. The FEC will release final numbers this weekend. (National Journal)
  • The Iowa government has started posting a list of open records requests online. The new system is intended to strengthen government transparency. (Government Technology)
  • A former Immigration and Customs Enforcement employee pleaded guilty to stealing at least $70,000 in a receipt forging and kickbacks scheme. The investigation is ongoing, involves at least 2 more ICE employees, and reaches as far up as the agency’s former acting intelligence chief. (Washington Post)
  • The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee passed legislation to make federal advisory committees more transparent. The “Federal Advisory Committee Act Amendments of 2011” now awaits action by the full House. (POGO)

Relevant committee hearings scheduled for 10/14:

  •  None.

Relevant bills introduced:

  • H.R. 3164. The Short Sale Transparency Act of 2011. To require Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to disclose the minimum purchase price that such an enterprise will accept on the short sale of a residence financed by a mortgage purchased by such an enterprise in order to make short sales a viable alternative to foreclosure. Referred to the Committee on Financial Services.
  • H.R. 3136. The Congressional Accountability Pay Act. To provide for rates of pay for Members of Congress to be adjusted as a function of changes in Government spending. Referred to the Committees on House Administration and Oversight and Government Reform.
Transparency events scheduled for 10/14:
  • None.

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