News Column

EDITORIAL: Handwriting is nice, but not in campaign reports

June 25, 2014

The Fayetteville Observer, N.C.

June 25--There's plenty to like about N.C. House Bill 919. Filed last year, it requires candidates and committees that get more than $10,000 in donations to report their campaign-finance donations electronically.

This would please the State Board of Elections, because it otherwise has to hand-tally candidates' financial reports and scan them into a computer before they can be posted on the board's website.

It would also please those of us who believe in transparent political finance. The voters should know who's supporting the candidates and who's financing the political-action committees.

But North Carolina still plods along the old way, allowing even big-bucks campaigns to file handwritten financial reports. More than half of this state's legislators still do it that way. The Board of Elections should be doing more important things than data entry. And it hurts the voters, who can't see candidates' financial filings soon enough.

The House liked Bill 919 well enough that it passed it 115-to-1 last year. It sent the bill over to the Senate, where it's still languishing in the Rules Committee. Apparently, someone in the Senate prefers hiding the money the old-fashioned way.

Stop the foot-dragging and join the 21st century. Enough with the delaying tactics.


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Source: Fayetteville Observer (NC)

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