Thursday, September 17, 2015

Voters entitled to information about donors to Corporation Commission races

The Capitol Times published a Guest Opinion piece by Bob Burns, a member of the Arizona Corporation Commission, and Thomas Koester, chairman of the Citizens Clean Elections Commission. They took issue with a recent op-ed by Glenn Hamer, CEO of the AZ Chamber of Commerce. Snippets follow.

The Grand Canyon State’s business community has no better cheerleader than Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry CEO Glenn Hamer.

However, in our view, his current effort to take the Arizona Corporation Commission and the Citizens Clean Elections Commission to task for trying to inject much-needed transparency into our elections is not in the best interest of Arizona voters. We decided to respond together.

Both of our offices have clearly defined responsibilities under Arizona law. Voters approved Clean Elections in 1998 and Arizona is just one of a handful of states that have elected utility regulators.

Disclosure is the bedrock of our democracy. Voters should be able to follow the money, understand how campaigns are financed and how election dollars are spent. In this way, voters are able to make informed decisions.

While we welcome Mr. Hamer’s thoughts, he might want to brush up on the law and the state Constitution that show both the Arizona Corporation Commission and the Citizens Clean Elections Commission are acting within their authority. And doing so for the benefit of the people.

You've seen the details of their explanation of statutory authority in previous posts to this blog, but you can use the rest of the article as a reminder.

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