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Tag Archive: electronic disclosure

Free the Bill: It’s time for Electronic Filing Legislation to Become Law

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Senate E-Filing At Its FinestOne week from today, House and Senate candidates will file their campaign finance reports. Even this far out from the next elections, many thousands of pages documenting many millions of dollars of campaign contributions will be filed. And those reports will contain some interesting information—which donors are trying to make their mark by giving early and often; which industries are hedging their bets by donating to both parties and which are more partisan; whether there is a spike in contributions that can be tied to a particular issue or interest; and which special interest may be using the campaign finance process to gain access or influence with particular members of Congress.

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Learning how to navigate Congress.gov

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The new and much improved location for Congressional information, beta.congress.gov, has plenty of resources to offer users. Now the Library of Congress (LOC) is offering webinars and in-person training to help users navigate the expanding website. We applaud LOC for providing a variety of training opportunities for those seeking a better understanding of the information available.

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Creating better public access to information

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Public- and private-sector experts from Mexico and the United States explored how laws granting public access to government information can be more effective at a recent Wilson Center event. Mexico's freedom of information law is hailed by some experts as a “gold standard” because it set a high bar: treating all information as public rather than secret. Those same experts agree, however, that legal and cultural changes are needed to make the system more effective. Mexico is still working to create a supporting set of laws for its freedom of information centerpiece. IFAI, the autonomous government body overseeing freedom of information in Mexico, is working to gain more enforcement power that will help it ensure government officials comply with the law. As the law stands now, IFAI has little power to tell a federal body that they must comply with freedom of information standards.

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