Monday, March 19, 2012

Texas graded “D+” in public integrity study

New Jersey takes top honors

“A West Virginia governor borrowed a car from his local dealership to take it for a “test drive.” He kept the car for four years, during which the dealership won millions in state contracts.”

This anecdote and many other examples appear in a Center for Public Integrity study released today that ranks the 50 states in order of their responsiveness to ethics concerns.

Surprisingly, the best rated state examined in the study is New Jersey.

Researchers placed reporters in each state capital to study the way ethics and public information procedures are handled.

Texas received a D+ rating because the appointed members of the Ethics Commission are divided along party lines, procedures call for a super majority on the commission to take action, and public officials must make their own evaluation of whether they are influenced by the influence peddlers knocking at their doors...

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