A bill marketed as for “transparency” appears to keep information secret from the public and gut an oversight board. Taxpayers treat a group of Representatives to an expensive Summer getaway. Cocaine.
HR 2061: “The Digital Accountability and Transparency Act (DATA) of 2013” passed the House of Representatives 388-1 on Monday, November 12, 2013.
Section 3: The following information would be published on the USASpending.gov website:
A “pilot program” will “consolidate reports” that agencies and companies who receive Federal money must turn in: The agencies and companies allowed into the pilot program must be worth at least $1 billion total; there’s no limit to the number of participants. The Recovery Board would start investigating the Inspectors General:
Section 5: Expands the amount of information that can be kept secret:
- Section 3 of the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 says:
- Section 5 of the DATA Act changes it to say:
- The “information protected” under the Freedom of Information Act which the DATA Act would keep secret from the public is:
- Some information from the Privacy Act of 1974 that the DATA Act would keep secret from the public is:
- The information from the US Tax Code that the DATA Act would keep secret from the public is:
The Recovery Board investigates companies that are given government money – “recipients”.
- The DATA Act extends the Recovery Board but lets its functions and website expire six weeks from now:
H.R. 313- which passed the House in May 2013- is attached to the end of the DATA Act.
- Limits spending on conferences to $500,000.
- Extraordinarily detailed reports required for conferences over $10,000.
- Cuts agencies’ travel budget by at least 30%.
Congressional Travel Expenses
Rep. Rush Holt of New Jersey was the only Representative to vote against the DATA Act.
As a scientist, I know firsthand how important scientific conferences and meetings are. I opposed H.R. 2061, the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act, because it would cut by 30 percent the amount of travel federal employees could undertake for conferences, meetings, and other crucial events. – Rep. Rush Holt
Rep. Darrell Issa of California was the main author of the DATA Act.
- Darrell Issa is the richest person in Congress in 2013. He has at least $430 million; he made $135 million in 2012 on Wall Street.
- Darrell Issa does the bidding of Big Business.
Representatives Quoted in this Episode
Sunlight Foundation blog in support of HR 2061
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