The transparency trifecta: part one

The initial issues before the Public Records Law Reform Task Force were the sweeping old ones: too many exemptions, too many fees, too much time between public record requests and their actual release.

Rhesus Macaque

Monkeying around with OHSU and what we’re not supposed to know

Since Halloween is upon us, I promise I will end this column with a federal agent in a monkey suit. Meanwhile, though, the story starts at Oregon Health & Sciences University, where on Sept. 3, the university received a shipment of primates from a controversial company, the owner of which was once convicted in an animal smuggling case. It’s all more legitimate than it sounds. Or is it?

On death and campaign finance

Tracking money in state politics is good. That seems to be the one thing everybody in Oregon can agree on when it comes to campaign finance. Even opponents of campaign finance reform proudly tout how ORESTAR, Oregon’s public-facing campaign finance database, tracks everything. Who needs reform, they say, in a state where the money is transparent? Except there’s one thing ORESTAR doesn’t track, we now know: pro bono actors who insert themselves into state politics but fail to leave fingerprints.