Follow the Money - Local Politicians Campaign Contributors
Friday, May 1, 2009
Wolff lists some Meza supporters as endorsers! In addition to those mentioned in a Fort Worth Star Telegram article, at least one member of our organization, a Meza volunteer and donor, was surprised to see his name on Mrs. Wolff's list of endorsers.
Mrs. Wolff is proud of the investment in infrastructure in the district. The district, which runs from Pantego to the Grand Prairie City Limits through central Arlington, contains neighborhoods ranging from upper middle income to lower income. The majority of the investment in infrastructure has been concentrated west of Collins Street while east Arlington continues to be neglected. Terry Meza will champion the neglected area of the district while supporting development throughout the district.
Until Councilwoman Wolff clears up her family legal and financial problems, we recommend that District 5 voters elect Terry Meza to the Arlington City Council.
By MERAIAH FOLEY
Macquarie Posts Decline in Annual Profit
SYDNEY — The largest Australian investment bank, Macquarie Group, posted its first fall in annual profit in 17 years Thursday, citing billions of dollars in losses stemming from the global slowdown.
Macquarie said net profit for the year that ended March 31 had fallen 52 percent to 871 million Australian dollars, or $635 million, from a record 1.8 billion dollars the year before. The widely expected result fell just short of the bank’s February profit forecast of 900 million dollars.
Later in the day, the bank confirmed it had raised 540 million dollars in an institutional placement of new shares at 27 dollars per share, Reuters reported.
Though Macquarie and other large Australian banks have been largely insulated from the pain suffered by their counterparts on Wall Street and in Europe, the result released Friday was the investment juggernaut’s worst since 1992, during the country’s previous recession.
Macquarie blamed “testing global market conditions” for the result, which included 2.5 billion dollars in one-time losses. Listed among the write-downs were 1.47 billion dollars in losses associated with managed funds and infrastructure assets; 496 million dollars in bad loans, mostly for property and mineral investments; and 248 million dollars in costs from the sale of its Italian mortgage business.
On the upside, Macquarie touted its relatively healthy balance sheet, with cash and liquid assets totaling 30.8 billion dollars and total capital of 10.2 billion dollars, which is 3.1 billion dollars more than the minimum required by Australian regulators.
Nevertheless, the bank requested Thursday that trading in its shares be halted while it considered plans to raise additional capital. There were no further details of the plans in the bank’s statement to the Australian Securities Exchange on Friday, but the Macquarie chief executive, Nicholas Moore, warned of continued uncertainty ahead.
“While there were some early signs of markets stabilizing in March and April,” Mr. Moore said, “significant uncertainties remain, and it is still too early to make any judgments on sustained market improvements.”
Until now, Macquarie has been one of the few banks around the globe that have not approached its shareholders for more money since the financial meltdown began last year.
Tim Schroeders, a portfolio manager at Pengana Capital, said that the announcement made Thursday was more of a reflection of changing banking conditions than a sign of trouble at Macquarie.
“The leverage that was previously in the banking system prior to the global financial crisis is no longer prudent, and as a result, banks are requiring more capital and returning less on that capital,” he said. “There are going to be adjustments required to reposition the business to be optimally profitable over the next 10 years.”
Read more in the New York Times
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Serving the community of Pantego for 38 years, Harriet Irby is academically trained in urban government. Her opponent, a 5-year resident and one-term councilman, is lax in filing expense reports when spending taxpayers’ money! Irby fights valiantly to make our political system transparent, fair and equitable for everyone, even those who disagree with her. Serving 30 years as election judge, Irby is fastidious in following the law, checking facts, evaluating sources, and consulting experts to verify data before she speaks or votes. The Town Council declared December 1, 2007 Harriet Irby Day in Pantego, noting Irby’s “deep and genuine love for this town”, serving “the community with distinction by performing a variety of public appointments and offices “, and “willingness to place her concern for the public and good above her own personal interest” These qualities are needed in all public servants. She’ll be an asset on the Town Council.
DFW Regional Concerned Citizens applauds Irby's consistent opposition to privitazion of public infrastructure. She opposes use of eminent domain for private gain! She understands complex transportation and environmental issues and works to preserve air, water and transportation for use by all citizens of this region.
Co-founder of DFW Regional Concerned Citizens
Monday, April 27, 2009
"Air Emissions from Oil and Gas Development in the Barnett Shale and the Rest of Texas"
By Dr. Al Armendariz
Wednesday, May 13, 2009, 7 pm
West Police Station, 2060 W Green Oaks Blvd, Arlington, Texas
Everyone is invited to attend this free lecture. Dr. Armendariz is a Research Associate Professor in the Department of Environmental and Civil Engineering at Southern Methodist University in Dallas and has written extensively on air quality issues related to industrial activity and gas drilling.
Presented by the Arlington Conservation Council and the Green Arlington Foundation.
For information, call 214 850 2412.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
The American Trucking Associations (ATA) applauds U.S. Senators Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) for their introduction of the “Transportation Access for All Americans Act,” (S. 885) and the “Transportation Equity for All Americans Act” (S. 884) on April 24.
The legislation will eliminate expensive federal subsidies that now flow to privatized highways. When a state or city leases a highway, it receives significant compensation, but taxpayers always end up paying higher tolls to the private operator.
“I would like to thank Senator Bingaman and Senator Grassley for their leadership,” says ATA President and CEO Bill Graves. “We look forward to working with both gentlemen on this critical issue,” he added.
Privatization is dismantling the nation’s interstate highway network. The United States cannot maintain a national highway network if key segments are leased to the highest bidder. More than money is at stake. Leasing roadways allows states only to postpone, not solve, their budget problems — and without understanding the long-term implications.
The American Trucking Associations is the largest national trade association for the trucking industry. Through a federation of other trucking groups, industry-related conferences, and its 50 affiliated state trucking associations, ATA represents more than 37,000 members covering every type of motor carrier in the United States.
Library of Congress THOMAS http://thomas.loc.gov/ (General Access LINK to Congress)
Link for BILL Searches:
Title: A bill to amend title 23, United States Code, to remove privatized highway miles as a factor in apportioning highway funding.
Cosponsors: Sen Bingaman, Jeff [D-NM] & Sen Grassley, Chuck [R-IA] (introduced 4/23/2009)
Latest Major Action: 4/23/2009 Referred to Senate committee. Status: Read twice and referred to the Cmte. on Environment and Public Works
Title: A bill to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide special depreciation and amortization rules for highway and related property subject to long-term leases, and for other purposes.
Cosponsors: Sen Bingaman, Jeff [NM] & Sen Grassley, Chuck [IA] (introduced 4/23/2009)
Latest Major Action: 4/23/2009 Referred to Senate committee. Status: Read twice and referred to the Cmte. on Finance
WASHINGTON – Rep. Joe Barton's charitable foundation, which has drawn headlines for the Arlington Republican, has spent more in overhead than on public causes, according to a published report.
A story in Monday's Washington Times noted that the charity started by Barton, the top Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, raised money from industries with a stake in his committee's business and took credit for some donations that corporations made directly to local nonprofits.
The fundraising is "perfectly legal and by the books," said Sean Brown, a spokesman for Barton.
In its first three years, the Joe Barton Family Foundation spent more on overhead – about $130,000 – than it gave to charity. In 2006, it donated $90,000 to construct a new 10,000-square-foot facility for Boys and Girls Club of Navarro County, according to the group's tax reports.
The organization formed as a tax-exempt public charity in 2005. Its mission is to help nonprofits, primarily in Barton's district, build large-scale capital projects. His daughter-in-law runs the Arlington-based organization.
Overall, Barton's foundation has spent less than a quarter of its funds on public causes, according to the Times.
The typical charity rated by the watchdog group Charity Navigator spends about 75 percent on programs and services and 25 percent toward administration and fundraising costs.
There is no one-size-fits-all for how much charities should spend on overhead, said Elizabeth Boris, who directs the Urban Institute's Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy.
Read more in the Dallas Morning News
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A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have. - Thomas Jefferson