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Tolleson loses bid to strip buffers from Ga. wetlands

Tolleson loses bid to strip buffers from Ga. wetlands

March 25, 2013 — Sen. Ross Tolleson lost badly last week when he tried an end run around a judge’s ruling protecting Georgia wetlands. Tolleson, who chairs the Natural Resources Committee, took to the well Friday seeking to amend an unrelated bill with language that, he said, would clarify the state’s rules for development around state waters. The amendment would also have cleared the way, however, for Grady County to proceed with building a 960-acre lake near Cairo, Ga.

DJJ bill could seal reports of staff misconduct

DJJ bill could seal reports of staff misconduct

March 20, 2013 — Allegations of wrongdoing in the state’s juvenile prisons could be sealed from public view under a bill considered today by a House subcommittee. Witnesses for the state Department of Juvenile Justice said the bill was intended to protect children in custody from retaliation for reporting gang or other criminal activity. The current version of the bill, though, makes no mention of gangs or juvenile crime. Rather, it would exempt from disclosure “the information provided by children who report abuses or wrongdoing in the juvenile justice system.”

House panel backs relaxed lobbyist rules, trims fee to $25

House panel backs relaxed lobbyist rules, trims fee to $25

Feb. 7, 2013 — In response to activists’ complaints about possible infringement of free speech, a House panel voted today to relax proposed registration requirements for lobbyists and to reduce their annual fee from $300 to $25.

Ralston bill: Ban gifts, ID pre-session donors, empower ethics panel

Ralston bill: Ban gifts, ID pre-session donors, empower ethics panel

Jan. 29, 2013 — House Speaker David Ralston today called for banning most lobbyist gifts to lawmakers and, for the first time, requiring legislators to immediately disclose hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions collected just before they convene each year. The speaker also introduced a bill to restore rule-making authority to the state ethics commission.

Top 3 PACs gave $1M to Ga. politicians

Jan. 14, 2013 — Trial lawyers, dentists and Realtors — perhaps Georgians’ three most-beloved professions — had the deepest pockets as state legislators convened today for 2013, an analysis of campaign disclosures shows. Between them, trade groups for those three professions donated more than $1.1 million to Georgia politicians and parties over the past two years.

Balfour lawyers up as GBI wraps $$$ probe

Balfour lawyers up as GBI wraps $$$ probe

Jan. 10, 2013 — The GBI has completed an investigation of state payments to soon-to-be-deposed Senate Rules chairman Don Balfour, but there’s no word yet as to its findings. Attorney General Sam Olens won’t say what the next step might be, if any. Balfour, meanwhile, appears to have retained Andersen, Tate & Carr, a Gwinnett County law firm that is defending ex-Gwinnett Commissioner Kevin Kenerly against bribery charges.

NRA’s Wayne LaPierre: $970,300 a year

NRA's Wayne LaPierre: $970,300 a year

Dec. 24, 2012 — Wayne LaPierre didn’t say so, but the pro-gun spokesmodel has 970,000 reasons to stand firm against restrictions on automatic weapons like those used to slaughter 27 schoolchildren and teachers in Newtown, Conn. That’s how much the National Rifle Association paid LaPierre, its CEO and executive vice president for two decades, in 2010.

George Anderson’s last hurrah: No charge for Deal’s legal fees

George Anderson's last hurrah: No charge for Deal's legal fees

Nov. 16, 2012 — George Anderson won his fight today over liability for Gov. Nathan Deal’s legal fees. But he says he’s finished nonetheless after a quarter-century of haranguing politicians across Georgia for perceived ethical lapses. “I can’t handle the stress anymore,” he said. “It affects my body too much.”

Carpetbaggers dump $1M more into charter-school campaign

Carpetbaggers dump $1M more into charter-school campaign

Oct. 26, 2012 — Just this month, Walmart heiress Alice Walton and other out-of-state interests dumped more than $1.1 million into the campaign to allow more state-chartered public schools in Georgia, new campaign finance filings show. Atlanta’s Bernie Marcus also showed his support with a quarter-million-dollar contribution.

Alphabet soup: A guide to special interests in Georgia

Alphabet soup: A guide to special interests in Georgia

Unraveling campaign finance and lobbyist spending reports can be difficult if you don’t know the lingo. Trade associations frequently create political action committees (PACs) with names that mask, intentionally or not, the special interests behind them. Others are known only by obscure acronyms; some use the same acronym. So, as we continue to shine a light on special interests’ influence in Georgia, we’ve compiled this quick guide to who’s who among the PACs

Graves, Rogers on hook for $1.5M after sale of ‘Meth 6’ motel

Graves, Rogers on hook for $1.5M after sale of 'Meth 6' motel

CALHOUN, Sept. 5, 2012 — The notorious “Meth 6” motel here has sold in foreclosure for pennies on the dollar, potentially clearing the way for lenders to pursue two Georgia lawmakers for a defaulted loan. On Aug. 16, after the abandoned motel brought $370,000, a Gordon County judge signed an order allowing a bank to seek payment on the rest of a $1.88 million debt from U.S. Rep. Tom Graves and Sen. Chip Rogers. Graves says the order is merely a formality.

Salary du jour: Red & Black publisher Harry Montevideo, $189,545

Salary du jour: Red & Black publisher Harry Montevideo, $189,545

Aug. 17, 2012 — If there’s a better way to piss off students and journalists than letting a condescending adman tell students how to run their newspaper, I can’t imagine what it would be. That, I would guess, is why UGA’s Harry Montevideo makes the big bucks. Montevideo — publisher of the Red & Black, whose key editorial staffers walked out this week — collected nearly $190,000 in salary a year ago from the non-profit that runs the student paper, tax records show.

  • about this page

    Some criminals have their photos and crimes plastered all over the Internet, so people know who they are and what they did. Not politicians -- until now. The Crooked Politician Registry is an archive of info on public servants who crossed the line.

  • do it yourself corruption investigation

    Most public corruption cases in Georgia are prosecuted in federal court. The U.S. attorney for North Georgia, including metro Atlanta, has an excellent Web site with archived news releases on prominent cases.

    Federal court files may be searched online for a nominal fee through PACER. (The first $10 a year of searches are free.)

    With the right keywords, online search engines will also turn up news releases or court rulings on a particular case at no cost.

    You can also search the Georgia and federal prison systems to find inmates and their crimes.