Bailout Scandal: Undisclosed Sums Paid to NY Mellon Bank
Just two weeks after the passage of the bailout bill, and one day after a Treasury Department official declared, “we are committed to transparency and oversight in all aspects of the program,” the Treasury Department began covering up the amount it would pay to New York Mellon Bank to act as a financial agent in the bailout.
The amount to be paid the bank in the contract posted to the Web is blacked out.
That’s transparency? That lets us do oversight?
BailoutSleuth also points to a contract with a law firm in which the hourly rates of attorneys and staff are blacked out.
Let’s get something clear here:
Private contracts can be kept private. Public contracts are the public’s business.
When the government goes to spend $700,000,000,000.00 of taxpayer money, the public must be able to review every particular of that spending.
We are under no obligation to “trust” that this will be handled well. We should be able to see that it is being handled well.
The firms that contract with the government to provide services have no claim to privacy or confidentiality if they want to do government business.
Treasury should immediately publish complete versions of these documents.