Two more op-eds about the Open House Project and report are now available:
- No light in basement, by Tim La Pira, The Hill, May 08, 2007.
- New report describes practical steps to open the House, by Gabriela Schneider and John Wonderlich. Commentary, The Examiner, May 8, 2007.
Schneider and Wonderlich say “Reforms such as creating a publicly accessible database of all bill status and summary information in a structured, non-proprietary format such as XML will help Congress maximize its ability to implement promised transparency and will also boost the capacity for meaningful public oversight and awareness of the legislative process.”
La Pira writes about Congressional financial reporting.
To its credit, the House already requires lobbyists to file disclosure reports electronically. But, remarkably, the House has not authorized the clerk to make those electronic reports available to the public electronically. Even the Senate, which has never been known for being on the cutting edge of technology, makes lobbying disclosure reports available on the Internet — but only as digital images, not for easy downloading. Both chambers’ travel and financial disclosure reports can still be found only in paper or digital-image format.
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