New Posts

Feb 8, 2016

Top 400 Taxpayers See Tax Rates Rise, But There’s More to the Story

As Americans were gathering party supplies to greet the New Year, the Internal Revenue Service released their annual report of cumulative tax data reported on the 400 tax r...

read in full
Feb 4, 2016

Chlorine Bleach Plants Needlessly Endanger 63 Million Americans

Chlorine bleach plants across the U.S. put millions of Americans in danger of a chlorine gas release, a substance so toxic it has been used as a chemical weapon. Greenpeace’s new repo...

read in full
Jan 25, 2016

U.S. Industrial Facilities Reported Fewer Toxic Releases in 2014

The Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) data for 2014 is now available. The good news: total toxic releases by reporting facilities decreased by nearly six percent from 2013 levels. Howe...

read in full
Jan 22, 2016

Methane Causes Climate Change. Here's How the President Plans to Cut Emissions by 40-45 Percent.

  UPDATE (Jan. 22, 2016): Today, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released its proposed rule to reduce methane emissions...

read in full
more news Launched

Yesterday, the White House launched, the administration’s long promised effort to provide a one-stop shop for information on lobbyists, campaign contributions, travel, visitors, and other possible conflicts of interest issues for public officials.

read in full

Sunshine Week: A Celebration of Transparency

Sunshine Week, the annual celebration of transparency in government, will be held this year from March 11-17. A number of events and activities are planned across the country to raise awareness of the importance of open government.

read in full

Environmental Justice Advances into Federal Policymaking

On Feb. 27, several federal agencies released environmental justice strategies that outlined steps they will take to address and reduce the disproportionate health and environmental harms that affect low-income, minority, and indigenous communities. This release is part of the Obama administration’s ongoing efforts to integrate environmental justice into all areas of federal policymaking, including transportation, labor, health services, and housing.

read in full

Getting the Truth about Safe Drinking Water

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is reviewing the Consumer Confidence Report (CCR) rule, a policy mandating that public water systems provide annual reports to consumers on the quality of local drinking water. The resulting reports have been criticized for being overly technical, complex, and difficult for the general public to understand or act upon.

read in full

Freedom of Information Act Portal Would Boost Responsiveness, Improve Efficiency

An interagency project underway could revolutionize implementation of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and significantly improve transparency and efficiency. The project to develop a government-wide portal for FOIA requests, a goal long supported by the open government community, could deliver as soon as this fall.

read in full

Standing Up for Credit Card Customers' Right to Know

Yesterday, the comment period ended on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB) proposal to create an online database of customer complaints about credit card companies. Here's an update on where things stand:

read in full

Peering Behind the Curtain: Consumer Protection Agency Proposes Public Credit Card Complaint Database

In December, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) proposed a public online database of consumer complaints about credit cards. The database would empower consumer choices on credit cards and position the agency as a leader in government transparency. However, the financial industry opposes disclosure and may use its considerable political influence in an effort to block public access to the information.

read in full

Small Wins for Transparency in 2012 Spending Package

The fiscal year 2012 spending package signed by President Obama on Dec. 23 included some good news for government transparency and right to know. Many of the worst provisions of the bill were removed from the final compromise, but open government advocates remain concerned.

read in full

House "Megabus" Contains Modest Boost to E-Gov Fund

Late Wednesday, the House Appropriations Committee released its proposed "megabus" spending bill, packaging the nine appropriations bills that have not yet been completed for Fiscal Year (FY) 2012. The House and Senate have been in negotiations to finish the nine bills before a stopgap spending bill expires on Friday.

read in full

Government Transparency in 2011: Moving the Chains

Heading into the holiday season, many Americans think not just of gifts and snowdrifts, but also of another winter tradition: football. As it happens, gridiron analogies are a good way to think about the year's events in the arena of government transparency and right-to-know. In March, OMB Watch published an assessment of President Obama's first two seasons as coach, which showed remarkable progress for Team Transparency. Throughout 2011, Obama and his staff made strong decisions, but there were also a few setbacks along the way.

read in full


Resources & Research

Living in the Shadow of Danger: Poverty, Race, and Unequal Chemical Facility Hazards

People of color and people living in poverty, especially poor children of color, are significantly more likely...

read in full

A Tale of Two Retirements: One for CEOs and One for the Rest of Us

The 100 largest CEO retirement funds are worth a combined $4.9 billion, equal to the entire retirement account savings of 41 percent of American fam...

read in full
more resources