Saturday, March 28, 2009

N.C. Senator Burr Time To Support Campaign Disclosure Parity Act

Here's an opportunity for North Carolina U.S. Senator Richard Burr , to increase government transparency while saving taxpayer money, paper and time, to boot. They should sponsor the Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act (SB482) CLICKHERE or click on the title above , which would require senators to do like members of North Carolinas' House delegation already do - file their campaign finance reports in electronic format.

Federal election law requires candidates for president and the House of Representatives to electronically file lists of their donors and expenses. Not so for U.S. senators, despite the fact they keep this information in this format at their campaign offices.

Instead, senators file paper reports of their campaign disclosures with the Senate Office of Public Records, which in turn has them shipped to the Federal Election Commission, which must then spend about $250,000 and untold hours having the records typed in, line by line, to the FEC's databases.
Most important, campaign finance disclosure is central to accountability. The public should know who is funding its senators' election campaigns.

This laborious process also wastes paper. Last year alone, the 340,000 pages submitted by Senate candidates and party committees used six tons of the stuff. In the process of harvesting those trees, paper manufacturers will emit as much sulfur dioxide as eight 18-wheeler trucks and emit as much asthma-causing particulates as two buses, according to Environmental Defense Fund's paper calculator (
The Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act, now pending in Congress, is the solution to this simple problem. The commonsense legislation, which has been languishing for several years, would bring the technology-averse Senate into modern times by requiring Senate campaigns to file their campaign reports electronically, like their counterparts seeking election to the House and the White House. This would result in timelier uploading of data by the FEC. In the past, when this legislation has been offered, Republican senators have used various parliamentary maneuvers to stop it. This time, North Carolina Senator Richard Burr should show leadership, cosponsor the bill and oppose any and all efforts to stall it.
In this Internet day and age, the public justifiably is accustomed to getting information quickly and easily. There's no reason to rely on an outmoded, expensive, wasteful Senate disclosure system. It's time for the Senate to step into the new age and agree to file campaign finance reports electronically.

Ellen S. Miller is the cofounder and executive director of the Sunlight Foundation, a Washington-based, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to using the power of the Internet to catalyze greater government openness and transparency.

Ellen S. Miller
Sunlight Foundation CLICKHERE


To reach Senator Richard Burr CLICKHERE

and please let them know how the phone call went or to e-mail them here is the link below,

Senator Richard Burr CLICKHERE

Senator Kay Hagan has co sponsored this bill on March 24, 2009

S . 482
At the request of Mr. FEINGOLD, the name of the Senator from North Carolina (Mrs. HAGAN) was added as a cosponsor of S . 482 , a bill to require Senate candidates to file designations, statements, and reports in electronic form.

No comments: