TribLIVE

| Opinion/The Review


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Shhhhhh! Secret!: The Commonwealth Financing Authority

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.
Related Stories

Letters home ...

Traveling abroad for personal, educational or professional reasons?

Why not share your impressions — and those of residents of foreign countries about the United States — with Trib readers in 150 words?

The world's a big place. Bring it home with Letters Home.

Contact Colin McNickle (412-320-7836 or cmcnickle@tribweb.com).

Daily Photo Galleries

Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
 

A model of open government and transparency Pennsylvania's Commonwealth Financing Authority is not. And given the public-be-damned secrecy under which it steadfastly operates, reasonable people could — and perhaps they should — assume nefarious activity is underfoot.

The authority, under the auspices of the equally transparency-bereft state Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED), was created a decade ago to allow state legislators to sign off on multimillion-dollar development projects. Just last fall it was tasked with distributing tens of millions of dollars in new grants from the $2.4 billion transportation bill. They're nothing more than a new version of WAMs, palm-greasing “walking-around money” now with the veneer of “oversight.”

As today's front-page story details, the Trib filed an open records request to examine emails between board members, legislators and officials of Gov. Tom Corbett's administration. We wanted to document any political deal-making. What we received was a Susquehanna Salute to public purpose — 167 pages of largely blacked-out records. So redaction-happy were DCED lawyers that they even deleted readily available public contact information.

Additionally, the DCED continues to play games by refusing to make public the applications of all grant requesters. That would be too burdensome, it says. But bear that burden it must, considering these public agencies are disbursing public dollars.

Time and chance might reveal all these secrets. But taxpayers have every right to know them. Now.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Editorials

  1. Let us resolve ...
  2. Laurels & Lances
  3. Greensburg Laurels & Lances
  4. Pittsburgh Laurels & Lances
  5. Alle-Kiski Laurels & Lances
  6. Quote for the 4th
  7. On Independence eve: Defending liberty
  8. Confusion resolved: Go River Hawks
  9. Connellsville Redevelopment Authority flap: Work it out
  10. McKeesport Tuesday Takes
  11. Alle-Kiski Tuesday takes