Tag Archives: transparency

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Senator Accuses House Lawmakers Of “Fouling The Pool” With Records Requests

Senator Accuses House Lawmakers Of “Fouling The Pool” With Records Requests

SB2222 is a bill introduced by Senator Tim Flakoll, a Republican from Fargo and employee of the North Dakota University System. In its original form the bill would have made public records requests from lawmakers made through Legislative Council an open record (currently lawmakers enjoy anonymity), and it also would have put a $5,000 cap

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Senate Committee Says Yes To Secret Evaluations For University Presidents

Heading into the 2015 legislative session one of the North Dakota University System’s top priorities was exemptions from open records laws. The state’s universities have put up a horrendous track record on transparency over the last several years, and it seems their solution to that problem is to remove records and meetings from public scrutiny.

Tim-Flakoll-photo

Bill To Limit Lawmaker Record Requests Gets Watered Down With Amendment

Originally SB2222, introduced by Senator Tim Flakoll (R-Fargo), would have done two things: Make all legislator requests for records a public record in their own right. Limit legislators to no more than $5,000 worth of requests per biennium unless Legislative Management approves said requests. Requests over that dollar limit not approved by Legislative Management would

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Bill Would End Practice Of Obscuring Political Contributions Through “Conduits”

In recent election cycles a development in the method of political contributions has confounded those of us who transparency. It’s the use of “conduits” to funnel money to candidates. Democrats make the biggest use of conduits here in North Dakota. Their candidates, and even their political party, push supporters to contribute to a group called

Fargo Forum's Ivory Tower

Why Is Fargo Forum Obsessing Over Common Core Request That Never Happened?

Last month Fargo Forum publisher Matt Von Pinnon wrote a column that was little more than a litany of all the open records requests his newspaper has filed. The headline of the column was, “Forum continues to take watchdog role seriously.” Numerous people emailed me links to the column asking the same basic question: Are these

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Video: Property Tax Transparency Bill Goes Down After Lobbying From Counties

Rep. Ben Hanson, a Democrat from Fargo, introduced HB1069 which would have required that North Dakota counties maintain an online database of property tax information. Not surprisingly local government lobbyists – perhaps the most effective opponents of government transparency in North Dakota – rushed to oppose the measure. “It’s just another state requirement that counties

Higher Ed Tuition

Bill Would Allow Attorney General To Fine Repeat Open Records Violators

North Dakota has a problem with repeat violators of the state’s open records and meetings statutes. For instance, the North Dakota University System has violated open records/meetings laws no fewer than 18 times since 2010. The violations are repeated and flagrant. In discussing the matter with Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem recently, he told me that

Tim-Flakoll-photo

Audio: Senator Flakoll Defends Limits On Legislator Records Requests

On Friday last week I interviewed Senator Tim Flakoll (R-Fargo) while guest hosting the Jay Thomas Show regarding SB2222 which, if passed, would do two things: Make all legislator requests for records a public record in their own right. Limit legislators to no more than $5,000 worth of requests per biennium unless Legislative Management approves

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Legislative Resolution Calls For Study Of Local Budget Transparency

On Friday – before the resolution was even posted online for the public to view – SCR4001 got a hearing and a unanimous “do pass” recommendation from the Senate Political Subdivisions Committee. The resolution calls for a study into “financial reports required by law to be compiled and filed by political subdivisions to determine whether they are being

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