2Day in #OpenGov 6/28/2013


by Carrie Tian, policy intern


  • Sen. John Cornyn came under fire a week ago for collecting three separate pensions and drawing a salary – but it seems he’s not alone. Nearly 20% of members of Congress are collecting pensions on top of their salaries, most from their service at the local and state levels. (National Journal)
  • The Army has blocked online access to the Guardian across all of its forces after the British-based newspaper broke the PRISM story. Military employees report being unable to click through to any of the newspaper’s articles. A spokesperson said that this was a routine “network hygiene” practice for the DoD. (Monterey Bay Herald)
  • Spurred by the conversation the Chinese government allowed its public to have about US cybermonitoring, a Chinese lawyer filed a public information request with the police to ask about China’s surveillance programs. Cybersecurity experts doubt he will receive any meaningful answers to his questions. (New York Times)
  • Top GOP donors are tiring fast of Republican dithering over the passage of the immigration bill. They want to see a deal worked out, and soon, for fear of further alienating Hispanic voters. (Washington Post)
  • Chris Martin, a researcher at the University of Leeds, published the results of his study on barriers to open data. Participants from the public sector felt that privacy concerns were a bigger barrier than their private sector counterparts, and attitudes were divided on financial consequences of making data open. However, respondents agreed the demand for open data definitely existed, leaving the bulk of the barriers on the supply side. (techPresident)
  • H.R. 2530 – To improve transparency and efficiency with respect to audits and communications between taxpayers and the Internal Revenue Service.
  • H.R. 2557 – To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to make imprisonment mandatory for unauthorized disclosure of returns and return information, unauthorized inspection of returns or return information, and willful oppression under color of law by officers and employees of the United States, and for other purposes.