2Day in #OpenGov 2/21/2012

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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:

Campaign Finance
  • Corporations have been getting involved in this year’s election cycle, but not necessarily with large cash donations. Many companies have been donating “in-kind” goods and services to super PACs. (Washington Times)
  • Super PACs have continued to dominate the Republican presidential nomination race. In fact, last month, the super PAC supporting Mitt Romney raised more money than his actual campaign. (Washington Post)
  • Billionaire Sheldon Adelson, who has already given $11 million to a pro-Newt Gingrich super PAC, has indicated that he is willing to spend up to $100 million to support Gingrich or the eventual Republican presidential nominee. Ron Paul (R-TX) is the only candidate that Adelson would decline to support. (National Journal)

Government

  • NIC inc. has won a contract to redesign and manage Maryland’s web portal over the next five years. NIC manages the websites of 27 states and a number of municipalities across the country. (Government Technology)
  • A constituent seeking information about Representative Steven Palazzo’s (R-MS) 2001 district schedule was told to file a FOIA request for the records. Unfortunately, records of this type are exempt from the law. (Roll Call $)
International
  • On February 15, the African Charter on Democracy, Elections, and Governance became operational and binding on African Union member states. The charter aims to improve accountability among African governments. (Open Society Blog)
  • The Open Government Partnership gained two new members recently. The addition of Panama and Costa Rica brings OGP membership to 52 countries. 42 countries are slated to debut their plans at the first OGP summit in Brasilia, Brazil in April. (Fierce Government)

Relevant committee hearings scheduled for 2/21-2/24:

  • None.

Relevant bills introduced:

  • H.R. 4061 – the Student Right to Know Before You Go Act. Referred to the House Committee on Education and the Workforce.
  • H.R. 4053 – Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Improvement Act of 2012. Referred to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
  • H.R. 4054– The Restore Public Trust Act. To amend the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995 to require the disclosure of political intelligence activities. Referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary.
Transparency events scheduled for 2/21-2/24:

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