New Proposal Could Keep Political Cash a Secret

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The Texas Ethics Commission is considering a proposal that would permit state officials to accept cash without declaring the amount received.

A draft opinion was issued this week in Austin.

Commission lawyers wrote that politicians could comply with Texas disclosure laws by reporting any gift of money as "currency," "check" or "money order" without listing the amount.

State law requires officials to disclose any gift worth more than 250 dollars, along with a description of the gift.

But the law does not explicitly state that officials must report the amount of a gift.

A spokesman for the watchdog group Texans for Public Justice says the opinion, if adopted at tomorrow's commission's meeting, would set an absurd and dangerous precedent.