It was Augusta to the rescue, or so it seemed.
Maine state legislators had a chance to fix a troubling shortcoming in Maine's clean elections policies earlier this month. As I report in my column in the forthcoming issue of Working Waterfront, key lawmakers refused to do so, apparently because they didn't understand what's at stake.
As regular readers are painfully aware, in January I discovered that Portland, Bangor, and other large Maine towns and cities have been destroying the campaign finance disclosures of candidates for local office, sometimes as soon as two years after an election. This makes it impossible to trace the relationship between money (e.g. property developers) and politicians (e.g. the officials who judge development proposals) over time.
As you'll read, legislators serving on the state and local government committee will have a final chance to fix the problem sometime next month. [UPDATE: 5/7/2009]
Meanwhile, I've posted copies of the surviving campaign finance disclosures for Portland on my own website, since Maine's largest city is unable to do so themselves. (I have also put out a blanket request for copies of disclosures for election cycles prior to 2006.)
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