Michigan's failed system of accountablity

MCFN Statement on the 2015 State Integrity Investigation from the Center from Public Integrity

It is no wonder that Michigan ranks 50th among the states in the new State Integrity Investigation from the Center for Public Integrity. Among Michigan's serious deficiencies: • Michigan has no law whatever on personal financial disclosure for officeholders and high administration officials. The public has no way to recognize when a public servant is serving his own financial interest at the expense of the public interest. • There is no cooling off period for individuals moving from elected office or a high administration position to lobbying or employment related to official public responsibilities. There are no safeguards protecting the public interest against unscrupulous public servants serving their own future employment prospects at the expense of the public interest. • Michigan's campaign finance disclosure system is abysmal. Fully one-third of all spending for communications about electoral candidates in Michigan's 2014 state elections was not disclosed through the State's campaign finance reporting system. The legislature and the governor acted in 2013 to make campaign finance reporting weaker and less meaningful. • Michigan's lobbying disclosure is ineffective. A significant amount of lobbyists' activity is not disclosed due to ill-advised reporting thresholds. There is no way to identify how much money multi-client lobbyists spend representing their various clients, or what bill, budget or regulation they are lobbying for, or against. Transparency and accountability are inoculation against corruption. The citizens of Michigan do not have the protections they deserve. The fact that Michigan has won a race to the bottom for integrity standards should not be a point of pride. The legislature and the governor should get to work and address this national embarrassment.

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Press Release 2015 News