In light of the governments commitment of an estimated
$8.5 trillion of taxpayer money to financial rescue initiatives with no transparency and little
oversight, CalAware and more than 75 other state, regional and national watchdog groups, in a coalition organized by OpenTheGovernment.org and the National Taxpayers Union, are asking that Congress put the public's interest first.
The public deserves vigorous, timely, and easily-accessible disclosure of all details
surrounding any government decisions regarding financial market problems, the signatories, coming from across the ideological
wrote in a letter to Congress today.
Since the public only has access to information collected by the government, the signatories
urge Congress to demand that the Department of Treasury begin collecting information on
certain aspects of how bailout aid is spent by recipients, including contracts for firms
benefitting from bailout aid and details for firms servicing bailout transactions, and that
timely information be made available to the public in a usable format.
The signatories also
urge Congress to strengthen oversight capabilities, to make all oversight reports available
to the public, and to ensure best practice whistleblower protection for
public and private employees connected to the bailout.