2Day in #OpenGov 12/7/2011

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Policy Fellow Matt Rumsey wrote this post.

Here is Wednesday’s look at transparency-related news items, congressional committee hearings, transparency-related bills introduced in Congress, and transparency-related events.

News Roundup:

Government

  • Senators Claire McCaskill (D-MO) and Jim Webb (D-VA) are pushing the Non-Federal Employee Whistleblower Protection Act. The act, modeled after data transparency provisions in the 2009 recovery act, aims to extend whistleblower protections to federal contractors. (Government Executive)
  • For the first time, Massachusetts will make hundreds of boxes of documents from Mitt Romney’s tenure as governor available to the public. The move comes after it was revealed that Romney authorized the destruction of many electronic records at the end of his term. (Yahoo/AP)
Lobbying
  • Azerbaijan is getting some support in Washington through a new nonprofit dedicating to supporting the country. The Azerbaijan American Alliance is set to provide a counter balance to the Armenian-American Lobby. The two countries have been clashing over disputed territory since the 1990’s. (The Hill)
  • The revolving door is spinning this week. Notably, the House Judiciary Committee is losing its deputy chief of staff to the National Music Publishers Association and a former general counsel for the DoD’s Contract Audit Agency is joining Venable’s government contracts practice. (The Hill)
Campaign Finance
  • House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) holds an annual Festivus fundraiser. This year, a group from Occupy Wall Street aired their grievances, a major component of the Seinfeld-popularized holiday, by protesting outside the fundraiser’s venue. (National Journal)
  • The Majority PAC, focused on elected Senate Democrats, intends to be a major piece of the 2012 puzzle. They have a big fundraiser scheduled, featuring more than 20 Senators as headliners. (Politico)
State and Local
  • The Los Angeles, CA City Council is scheduled to vote on a resolution calling for the US Congress to amend the constitution to declare that money does not equal speech. The resolution is in response to the Citizens United Supreme Court Decision. (Lobby Comply)
  • The Washington, DC Council took a first vote on ethics reform legislation yesterday. The bill, which has faced significant criticism, will likely be amended before a final vote sometime before the new year. (DCist)

Relevant committee hearings scheduled for 12/7:

House

  • Oversight of the Antitrust Enforcement Agencies. Judiciary. 2141 RHOB. 10:00 am. Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet hearing.
  • A Medicaid Fraud Victim Speaks Out: What’s going wrong and why? Oversight and Government Reform. 2154 RHOB. 10:00 am. Subcommittee on Government Organization.

Relevant bills introduced:

  • None.
Transparency events scheduled for 12/7:

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