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The Collin County Observer believes that informed voters can be empowered to make better choices at the polls.
Federal and state laws require that all candidates file periodic reports detailing their campaign contributors and expenses. However it is nearly impossible for the average voter to navigate the myriad of regulations so that they can find and research the candidates' disclosures.
State reports are filed with the Texas Ethics Commission. State filers include candidates for Governor, Executive statewide offices, State House, State Senate and District Judges. These reports are also posted online and can be found here.
Searching for financial information for local candidates can be daunting. Most jurisdictions do not post campaign finance reports online. Citizens must take the time and expense to request the reports from city secretaries, school districts, and other taxing entities. Unfortunately, other than for county offices, it is beyond the resources of The Observer to try to post all these local filings.
Candidates and officeholders for Collin County offices are also local filers. They file with the Collin County Elections Department. While the county has told me they have plans to post these reports, as of now, they are still held in filing cabinets at the Elections Department.
The Collin County Observer has once again filed an Open Records request for all campaign finance reports due to the county. We have posted all county and state July, 2010 Semi-Annual Reports here. It is our hope that our readers will avail themselves of the opportunity to research these reports and learn more about the candidates who seek their support.
Because of the Observer, the Dallas Morning News has now started to focus on some of the real problem here instead of vapid garden parties. The contrast has been startling.
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