Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Tina Renna: Who I Am, What I Do

While managing my husband's Independent run for freeholder in 2003, I was frequently denied or delayed access to public records from the all-Democrat controlled Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders. This was the start of my activism, which is to get the county to be more accountable to the taxpayers by forcing them to release information. Through my numerous official complaints to the State's Government Records Council the county has been placed on their so called "Matrix list" three times for infractions of the law. Even with that, to this day, the county persistently denies and delays access to open government records.

The more the county tried to keep information from me the more I realized that they had a lot to hide; the more information I obtain the more I realized how little residents are being told about the spending and unethical actions of this invisible layer of government which claims a quarter of our property tax bills.

Investigative reporting at the county level of government is practically nonexistent. Increasingly, the media's failure to provide diverse viewpoints and unbiased information as well as exposing government practices is undermining the strength of our democracy. Dissatisfaction with news coverage of Union County government along with an obvious manipulation of the media by a taxpayer-funded million-dollar Public Information Department has led to an urgent need to inform the public.

It is my goal to join together with other concerned citizens and demand accountability from Union County government. We will work to investigate Union County spending practices and will petition the news media to meet its obligations as the fourth estate to serve the public and protect democracy by publishing stories promoting diversity, accessibility, and accountability as watchdogs of the people not protectors of the powerbroker controlled government.

"Whenever the people are well informed, they can be trusted with their government, for whenever things go so far wrong as to attract their notice, they can be relied on to set things right." - Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, June 05, 2005

I post on the County Watchers.