Updates

News Release | WashPIRG | Transportation

Report Examines Whether High-Speed Rail Should Be Public, Private or Both

The report comes at a time when Congress and state officials are debating future funding for high-speed rail, including upgrades to Amtrak’s 467-mile “Cascade Corridor” which connects Eugene, Portland, Seattle and Vancouver, BC. Meanwhile, the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure chair has proposed privatizing Amtrak with the hope of garnering private financing for new bullet trains along the Northeast. California is seeking private funds as part of a planned route connecting Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Media Hit | Financial Reform

Senate needs to move forward on confirming new chief for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

The good news is that on July 21 the landmark Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) takes over as the nation’s chief consumer bank regulator. The bad news is that because no director has been confirmed, the Bureau will not be able to effectively protect consumers in the financial marketplace that includes payday lenders, mortgage companies, and credit bureaus.

News Release | WashPIRG | Consumer Protection

Shareholders deserve to know how corporations spend their money in elections

Although millions of Americans contribute money every year to political campaigns and causes that they support, millions more contribute to political causes without even knowing it – as the shareholders of large corporations.

News Release | WashPIRG | Transportation

Report: Most Aging Baby Boomers Will Face Poor Mobility Options

The first baby boomers turn 65 years old this year and seniors in the Puget Sound area are in danger of being unable to get around. The largest generation in history, Boomers are also the most dependent on automobile travel. Yet by 2015, many seniors ages 65 and older in the Puget Sound area will live in communities with poor options for people who do not drive, according to a new report. Many metropolitan areas in Washington state will see over a 70% increase in the number of seniors without adequate access to transit since 2000.

News Release | WashPIRG | Democracy

WashPIRG to receive “Organization of the Year” award for campaign finance disclosure work

On Saturday the Washington Public Interest Research Group (WashPIRG) will be recognized for its work on campaign finance disclosure and other elections-related legislation during the 2011 Legislature.

News Release | WashPIRG | Financial Reform

Keeping Foxes In Charge of the Chicken Coop

With overwhelming public support that continues, Congress in July 2010 passed important new financial rules and created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to oversee and regulate financial services from a consumer-based perspective. Now, less than two months before the landmark consumer cop takes over, the U.S. House of Representatives is poised to “stick a knife in its ribs,” in the words of Elizabeth Warren, who has been tasked by President Obama with running the CFPB.

News Release | WashPIRG | Financial Reform

Two Years After Passing the Credit CARD Act, Congress Steps Up Attacks on Consumer Cop Designed to Enforce It

“The Credit CARD Act of 2009 has eliminated numerous credit card tricks and traps without causing skyrocketing interest rates or any of the other horrible side-effects that the banks once warned about.  In spite of that success, the banks and their Congressional allies are now seeking to eliminate the CFPB, the new consumer cop created to enforce the CARD Act and protect consumers from other tricks of the trade, like deceptive mortgage practices and unfair overdraft fees.

News Release | WashPIRG | Democracy

Governor to sign watered-down campaign finance legislation

Governor Gregoire today is expected to sign legislation that was originally intended to curb campaign finance abuses in Washington, although the bill presented to her contains significantly fewer limits on abuses than it started with.

Legislation is a plus for state's consumers

Although the focus is still on balancing the budget as the Legislature nears adjournment from the regular session, there is some good news from Olympia for consumers, and legislators should be recognized for delivering some meaningful consumer protections that will help people all across our state.

Media Hit | Democracy

Campaign finance reform? Amateurs could circumvent this

About 10 minutesor an hour at most is how long it would take even a marginally skilled political operative would take to circumvent the new campaign finance rules contained in Senate Bill 5021.

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