2Day in #OpenGov 10/17/2011


Policy Fellow Matt Rumsey wrote this post.

Jump into Monday with a look at the week’s transparency-related news items, congressional committee hearings, transparency-related bills introduced in Congress, and transparency-related events.

News Roundup:

Super Committee 
  • Dave Camp (R-MI) has raised more than $475,000 since joining the Super Committee. Among industries facing cuts, healthcare interests paid him the most attention. He also received sizable amounts from the petroleum and agriculture lobbies. (The Hill)
  • Members of the Super Committee have opened up to praise the relationship between co-chairs Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) and Jeb Hensarling (R-TX). Their amicable relationship could bode well for the committee’s chances at success. (Politico)
  • The White House is refusing to hand over internal communications about Solyndra, including President Obama’s BlackBerry messages, to House investigators. (Politico)
  • San Francisco has a new public financing fund for mayoral elections. It is intended to help minor candidates compete and limit the influence of large donors. Unfortunately, it may also encourage hopeless candidates and waste taxpayer money. (New York Times)
  • Many government agencies are taking to social media, especially Facebook, but some have been more successful than others. (Government Technology)
  • Maps and GIS data should be an important part of government transparency and accountability efforts. (govfresh)
  • House Democrats are fighting efforts by Republicans to phase out the Election Assistance Commission. Democrats claim that shuttering the EAC would increase the cost of elections and decrease transparency, while Republicans argue that the commission has fulfilled its purpose. (The Hill)
Presidential Candidates
  • Herman Cain is refusing to name his economic or foreign policy advisers. He claims that he doesn’t want them exposed to criticism. (National Journal)

Relevant committee hearings scheduled for 1017-10/21:


  • Armed Services. Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan Report. 232-A RSOB. 10/19, 2:30 pm. Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support.
  • Judiciary. Homeland Security Oversight. 226 DSOB. 10/19, 10:00 am. Full committee hearing.
  • Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. Business meeting. 342 DSOB. 10/19, 10:00 am. Full Committee hearing.
  • Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. FEMA Accountability. 342 DSOB. 10/20, 10:30 am. Subcommittee on Disaster Recovery and Intergovernmental Affairs.
  • None.

Relevant bills introduced:

  • H.R. 3159. Foreign Aid Transparency and Accountability Act of 2012. Referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs.
  • H.R. 3204. Guidance Accountability and Transparency Act of 2011. Refereed to the Committee on Energy and Commerce.
  • H.R. 3184. To amend the Small Business Act to ensure fairness and transparency in contracting with small business concerns. Referred to the Committee on Small Business and the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
  • H.R. 3228. To require Federal law enforcement agencies to report to Congress serious crimes, authorized as well as unauthorized, committed by their confidential informants, to amend title 28, United States Code, with respect to certain tort claims arising out of the criminal misconduct of confidential informants, and for other purposes. Referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.
Transparency events scheduled for 10/17-10/21:

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