CAGW: Ethics Violations Indicative of Wider Lack of Accountability | Citizens Against Government Waste

CAGW: Ethics Violations Indicative of Wider Lack of Accountability

Press Release



For Immediate ReleaseDaytime contact: Jessica Shoemaker 202-467-5318
August 19, 2005After hours contact:   Tom Finnigan  202-253-3852

 


(Washington, D.C.) –  Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) today criticized Gov. Bob Taft (R) for violating ethics rules by failing to report nearly $6,000 in gifts.  Gov. Taft apologized in court yesterday, and a judge ordered him to pay $4,000 in fines and write an explanatory letter to the people of Ohio.  A lack of accountability and transparency were key themes of the 2005 Ohio Piglet Book, a joint publication recently released by CAGW and The Buckeye Institute for Public Policy Solutions.  The Piglet Book details how nearly $3.5 billion could be saved if the state were to eliminate wasteful and unnecessary spending.


“The Governor’s actions are a part of a larger climate of corruption, mismanagement, waste, and a sense of entitlement in Ohio state government,” CAGW President Tom Schatz said.  “Unreported gifts are not the only area where a lack of transparency keeps government officials from being held accountable.  If the governor is serious about cleaning up state government, he should cut the waste and encourage reform to open up the budget process to allow greater scrutiny by taxpayers.”


The Ohio Piglet Book exposes the appalling waste, abuse and mismanagement that exists in the Ohio budget.  For example, large portions of state agency budgets are being spent without detailing how the money will achieve a programmatic goal. 


The Piglet Book touches on many areas in the state budget where wasteful spending can be eliminated, including:


  • $2.14 million by the Department of Agriculture to provide research and marketing to local wine makers.
  • $250,000 by the Cultural Facilities Commission to a museum of rock music and memorabilia.
  • $200,300 from the Board of Regents to the Canadian Studies Center at Bowling Green State University.

 “When government officials are busy indulging in golf outings and free meals, it is not surprising that billions of tax dollars are being wasted due to negligence and inadequate oversight.  The Piglet Book arms taxpayers with a valuable resource for holding elected officials accountable,” Schatz concluded.


The report is available at CAGW’s website, www.cagw.org.  For answers to further questions, to schedule and interview, or to order a hard copy, please contact Tom Finnigan at (202) 467-5309 or media@cagw.org


Citizens Against Government Waste is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government.

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