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Opening the Books to the Public

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  • DGHarrison
    The following information comes from the Taxpayers League of Minnesota. It would be good to have our learned members visit the temporary site and leave
    Message 1 of 2 , Feb 16, 2007
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      The following information comes from the Taxpayers League of Minnesota. It would be good to have our learned members visit the temporary site and leave feedback. We don't get a lot of opportunities like this.

      Doug Harrison
      New Hope, MN
      Last fall in this space I noted the passage of the Coburn/Obama Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act – a bill which would create a “Google”-like, searchable database of federal spending. The folks at the Office of Management and Budget who will be creating the website (due to appear in January 2008), are currently out with a temporary site (www.FederalSpending.gov), designed to “solicit feedback from the public on how to shape the search engine of the website to generate the most complete results.” Stop by, take a look and give them your two-cents. Also mentioned previously in this space, that same type of legislation is making its way through the legislative process in St. Paul. The Minnesota bill, HF 376/SF 416 authored by State Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-Eden Prairie) and State Sen. Ann Rest (DFL-New Hope), aims to provide the same type of accountability for any entity receiving state funds. -- Mark Giga, Taxpayers League of Minnesota



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    • DGHarrison
      This was my first response to the request for public input: You indicate that the following information will be made available: 1. the name of the entity
      Message 2 of 2 , Feb 16, 2007
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        This was my first response to the request for public input:
        You indicate that the following information will be made available:

           1. the name of the entity receiving the award;
           2. the amount of the award;
           3. information on the award including transaction type,
              funding agency, etc;
           4. the location of the entity receiving the award; and
           5. a unique identifier of the entity receiving the award.

        In addition to that information, we must also have the following:

           6. the names of the persons responsible for requesting
              the awards;
           7. the relationships between those requesting the awards
              and those receiving the awards;
           8. the bills in which the awards appeared;
           9. the names of the lawmakers who voted "for," "against,"
              or "present"; and
          10. periodic follow-up reports on whether the awards were
              wasted or put to good use by the entities that received
              them.


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