2Day in #OpenGov 6/5/2013


by Carrie Tian, policy intern


  • NY state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman will require dark money disclosures by nonprofit organizations in the state. Any group that spends at least $10,000 to influence NY elections will need to disclose details of its activities, including electioneering at the federal, state, and local levels.  (Wall Street Journal)
  • Scrutiny of the IRS continues, as a Treasury Department audit of the agency revealed exorbitant conference spending, including a single conference in 2010 that cost $4.1 million. The exact price of the conference is unknown because the IRS – which demands detailed financial records from taxpayers – did not require its management to track conference costs. (POLITICO)
  • The police force of Boynton Beach, Fl., recently adopted the MyPD app, a nationwide app that allows citizens to submit tips directly to their police department and stay abreast of local safety updates. The Boynton Beach PD also polled its Facebook followers about where to install additional officers and maintains active accounts on Youtube, Twitter, and Pinterest. (Government Technology)
  • Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius came under fire for making calls  to companies regulated by HHS, including Johnson & Johnson and Kaiser, asking for their support of Enroll America under Obamacare. Sebelius responded that she was following the legally-authorized precedent of establishing public-private partnerships. (ThinkProgress)
  • Majority Leader Eric Cantor unveiled cosponsor.gov, a site that allows individual citizens to indicate their support for pieces of legislation introduced by sitting members of Congress. The site also allows users to track legislation as it moves through the House. (National Review)
  • Another newly-launched site is performance.gov, which catalogs federal agencies and seeks to centralize commonly-sought information about each agency, including budget accounts and descriptions of products and services. (Fierce Government)
  • Newly-released records indicate that Mayor William Lantigua of Lawrence, MA, spent over $30,000 of taxpayer money to fight the release of records related to legal bills and rental payments. Though Lantigua claims the records contained “privileged” information, FOIA labels them as public documents. (The Valley Patriot)
  • As the AP demands lists of the email addresses that political appointees use in official capacities, the debate about secret email addresses continues, over whether they are necessary to prevent officials from being inundated in spam, or whether they make record-keeping unnecessarily arduous and opaque. (Washington Post)
  • H.R. 2240. To require the head of each executive agency to submit a report on the implementation of Government Accountability Office reports on reducing duplication, achieving savings, and enhancing revenue within the Federal Government.



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