- Ron Paul, who recently retired from Congress after mounting an unsuccessful bid for the GOP nomination last year, still has some Congressional campaign cash floating around. He’s spending some of that money on other projects that he’s started. Last month his campaign donated $150,000 to the Foundation for Rational Economics and Education. The group that he founded in 1976 is currently run by his wife. (Public Integrity)
- A new GAO report doesn’t shed much light on the political intelligence industry. The report found that political intelligence is hard to define and complicated to regulate. The GAO might be hesitant to take a stand on the industry, but Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) are planning to introduce legislation that would institute disclosure requirements. (Federal Computer Week)
- According to a new report by the Housing and Urban Development department’s IG, almost $700 million in federal aid for those hit by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita is unaccounted for. Most of the discrepancies stem from failure by more than 24,000 recipients to comply with the aid terms or provide sufficient documentation. (Government Executive)
- The Federal Reserve emerged from the primordial soup of federal law the same year that Justice Louis Brandeis argued for the cleansing properties of Sunlight. A century later, the central bank is taking small, but important, steps towards transparency. (Harvard Ethics Blog)
- Outside money is starting to heat up the New York Mayor’s race. A group of labor unions and Democratic activists dropped $250,000 for a three week run of ads attacking city council Speaker Christine Quinn, the races presumed front runner. (New York Times)
- Last week President Obama unveiled a $100 million initiative to map the human brain, an initiative inspired in part by the Human Genome Project. It is yet to be known if the project will provide for open access. (Open Knowledge Blog)
RELEVANT BILLS INTRODUCED:
HAPPENING THIS WEEK 4/8-4/12:
- Egypt’s Media at a Crossroads: Between Flourishing Freedoms and Calamitous Crisis. Georgetown. Mon. 4/8. 12:00 – 1:30 pm. 37th and O Street NW, CCAS Boardroom, 241 ICC, Washington, DC.
- Belarus and the Neighborhood: Where is Democracy Possible? Elliot School. Mon. 4/8. 4:00 – 6:00 pm. 1957 E Street NW, Voesar Conference Room, Washington, DC 20052.
- Current Issues in Campaign Finance Law Enforcement. Senate Judiciary. Tues. 4/9. 226 DSOB. Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism.
- Reducing Waste in Government: Addressing GAO’s 2013 report on duplicative Federal programs. House Oversight and Government Reform. Tues. 4/9. 2:00 pm. 2154 RHOB.
- Ukraine: Democracy in Danger? NED. Tues. 4/9. 3:00 – 4:30 pm. 1025 F Street NW, Suite 800, Washington, DC 20004.
- U.S. Foreign Assistance: What oversight mechanisms are in place to ensure accountability. House Oversight and Government Reform. Wed. 4/10. 9:30 am. 2154 RHOB.
- Legislative Transparency and the Joint Committee on the Organization of Congress. GMU. Wed. 4/10. 12:00 – 1:00 pm. George Mason University, Arlington Campus, Founders Hall, Room 317, 3301 Fairfax Drive, Arlington, VA 22201.
- Markup of a bill to affirm the policy of the United States regarding internet governance. House Energy and Commerce. Wed. 4/10. 4:00 and Thur. 4/11. 2:15 pm. 2123 RHOB. Subcommittee on Communications and Technology.
- Big Data and Big Stories From the FEC. National Press Club. Fri. 4/12. 9:00 am. 529 14th Street NW, 13th Floor, Bloomberg Room, Washington, DC 20045.
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