ALEC chair spends over $20,000 on travel

Being chair of the anti-education, anti-democratic, anti-worker American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) comes with benefits – evidently, a $20,827.67 travel benefit on the taxpayer dime.

That’s how many tax dollars South Dakota’s ALEC chair Senator Deb Peters (R-Hartford) has spent on travel during her time in the legislature, and Peters is already defending the use of tax dollars for more legislators to attend ALEC functions.

Can you think of a better use of $20,827.67?

How about for educating our kids? Or helping disabled veterans get to their doctor’s appointments? Or lowering health care premiums for working families and seniors in nursing homes? All these are measures Sen. Deb Peters helped kill in the last legislative session at the same time she’s defending her $20,827.67 travel perk.

Hold Republicans like her accountable. Add your name to our petition below. We need to show Republicans that we’re going to make ALEC travel on the taxpayer dime an election year issue. We can’t do that without your show of support. Over 400 have signed so far. Be a petition signer today!

No Tax Dollars for ALEC Dues!

Send Republicans a message - No Tax Dollars for ALEC Dues! Sign the petition today.

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  • Mn1234

    Good evening –
    I saw your article on travel and was stunned to see this
    paragraph:

    Being chair of the anti-education, anti-democratic,
    anti-worker American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) comes with benefits – evidently, a $20,827.67 travel benefit on the taxpayer dime.

    The Corporations that belong to ALEC – provide
    “scholarships” for legislators to attend ALEC meetings – covering
    100% of expenses incurred to an ALEC meeting.
    Peters – as state chair monitors the SD ALEC scholarship
    account with the ALEC private sector chair from SD.

    In the past South
    Dakota legislators HAS used the scholarship fund
    including Peters

    South Dakota
    Scholarship Fund
    2008
    $11,250.00

    2007
    $11,250.00

    2006
    $23,441.00

    TOTAL 45,941.00
    Donated by corporations so SD legislators can attend meetings for free

    2008
    $3,988.66

    2007
    $2,979.03

    2006
    $7,802.27

    TOTAL 14,769.96
    Paid to SD Legislators to attend ALEC meetings

    This information is from this report
    http://www.alecexposed.org/w/images/2/2f/BUYING_INFLUENCE.pdf

    That report also includes the following statement

    Citizens Can’t Track the Gifts Received
    The situation in Wisconsin
    also illustrates how dif- ficult it is for concerned citizens to discover these
    gifts, because they are rarely reported as “gifts.” At the time of PhRMA’s big
    check, the ALEC legislative co-chair for Wisconsin was state Senator Scott Fitzgerald. In response to an open records request by CMD, his office later revealed that at least seven state legislators had received funds from ALEC in 2010 (Reps. Brett Davis, Robin Vos, Scott Suder, Steve Nass, Mike Huebsch, and Phil Montgomery, and Sens. Ted Kanavas, Leah Vukmir, and Randy Hopper). They received between $985 and $2,461 for trips filled with meetings with lobbyists. Only two legislators on that list disclosed that they got ALEC travel money on their “Statement of Economic Interests.” Some mentioned the ALEC funds in campaign filings. And some, like Sen. Randy Hopper, did not disclose it.

    IF a legislator is getting reimbursed for expenses for the
    ALEC meetings by the STATE
    AND receiving reimbursement from ALEC
    Scholarship Fund for the same meeting
    and NOT reimbursing the STATE after they receive the ALEC
    scholarship money
    They are double dipping.

    Not saying they are double dipping – not saying they are
    not.

    Thought you should be aware of this information.