2day in #OpenGov 1/23/2012

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Policy Fellow Matt Rumsey wrote this post.

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

News Roundup:

International
  • The United Nations, the Inter-Parliamentary Union, and the US House of Representatives are organizing an event to promote and discuss the use of open document standards in parliaments and legislatures world-wide. (ICT Parliament)
  • The Navarra region of Spain released a draft of their new law on Transparency and Open Government. Open government groups have applauded the law for setting “new standards for Spain and internationally.” (Access Info)

Government

  • Newt Gingrich came out against the SOPA and PIPA legislation on Thursday. But, his comments don’t match up with previous statements that he has made about online free speech. In 2006, Gingrich argued in favor of censoring the internet in cases involving Islamic radicals. (Politico)
  • The Navy may have pressured the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry into withholding information related to water contamination at Camp Lejune. (POGO)

Lobbying

  • According to year-end reports, some of Washington’s biggest lobbying shops saw their revenues decline in 2011. Gridlock in Congress combined with still-shaky economic conditions caused businesses to allocate lobbying money carefully. (The Hill)
  • Former Representative William Delahunt (D-MA) started his own lobbying firm shortly after retiring from congress. One of his first clients, the town of Hull Massachusetts, is paying his firm $15,000 per month to lobby for a project that he personally earmarked $1.7 million for when serving in Congress. (New York Times)
Campaign Finance
  • Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) and his likely Democratic opponent Elizabeth Warren reached a tentative agreement aimed at dissuading outside groups from flooding their race with money. (Politico)
  • New federal rules allow traditional PACs and super PACs to operate under the same roof. These “hybrid” PACs can raise and spend unlimited outside money and give limited donations directly to campaigns and committees. Currently corporate and union PACs cannot become hybrids, but they are fighting for that power. (Politico)

Relevant committee hearings scheduled for 1/23-1/27:

House:

Relevant bills introduced:

  • None.
Transparency events scheduled for 1/23-1/27:

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