My new day job: Bag man for DaytonPolitics

I’m sure the rumors are flying, but, no- I’m not the owner or author of Dayton Politics. I have enough to do- and I don’t mind signing my name to what I write (hell, other people send mail pretending to be me- so why not sign it).

So, when I got an e-mail from daytonpolitics @ gmail dot com asking for me to go pick up the campaign finance reports for the last County Commission race- so mystery person could publish them online- and still remain anoynomous- I said sure, why not.

So, yes- I picked them up (as I was eye balled at the Board of Elections) – but no, I don’t have time, energy, or care enough to scan them all to put online.

But- I did look at them- briefly, before putting them in my mail box for the secret person to come pick them up- and leave me $30 in cash (yeah, I made about $3- woo-hoo)- and saw some people gave to both sides (talk about CYA)- and who tossed the big money at people.

Dan Foley knows how to raise money- big money. In big chunks- which is something I never felt good about when I ran. I felt guilty when one of my best friends gave me $500 (but, felt much better when someone else felt they had to match it as a matter of some sort of childish “honor”).

Here is the kicker- the info should be available online- and isn’t- and the question is why? I posted my campaign donations back in 1999– and Lovelace’s and Bootsie’s as well.

I found the format, the accounting principles, and reporting process to be ackward and flawed when I last ran. Quite frankly, there is no excuse for creating all this paper anymore. We need a campaign finance website- that allows you to track all of your donations and expenses in real time- generating real time reports- and providing absolutely transparent- and bullet proof tracking of the money. In fact, the accounts should be held by the BOE- and the candidates issue all checks from the county- or use a supplied debit card. All reports will be available online- and researching things like who is giving to both sides would be easy to track. Also, verification of conflicts of interest would be instant as well- stopping businesses doing business with government from funding candidates.

Just another idea for simplifying and fixing government brought to you by David Esrati.

What do you think?

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2 Responses

  1. Melissa March 15, 2007 / 4:29 pm
    Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t the MC BOE have its own dedicated page, not just an extension of the county’s site? Because I tried to go to it just now and was directed to the county’s main site (which lists the BOE as part of its services).

    About a week ago, they hadn’t updated any of the upcoming election info, so all that was there was from last November. Reeeeeeeally slick…. What’s going on with them?

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  2. David Esrati March 15, 2007 / 4:58 pm

    As long as Tom Ritchie remains on the BOE Board of directors- who can expect much.
    I don’t remember the BOE having a site except for the night of elections- when they would slowly post returns.

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