October 18, 2013


For Profit Colleges and the Public Private Axis. Don’t look now, but one of the biggest corporate scandals in Washington, D.C. is about to blow. State and federal investigators are deep into an investigation into the private sector college and university industry……“There are 32 state Attorneys General, led by Kentucky’s Attorney General Jack Conway, who are pooling resources and information to investigate for profit colleges for things like fraud, for lying to students about what their degree will get them, for lying about their placement rates both to students and to the government in terms of how many of the students are getting jobs after they graduate, for lying about whether it’s a federal loan or a private loan not guaranteed by the taxpayer,” Halperin told Corporate Crime Reporter in an interview last week. Corporate Crime Reporter

Food Stamp Outage Highlights Problems With Privatization of Public Services. The government shutdown was not to blame for the crashing of the food stamp program for poor families in 17 states over the weekend, just the latest in a long line of snafus by private contractors hired by government.  Truth-Out

IL: Putting the Brakes on Privatization in Chicago….In championing the law—titled the Privatization Transparency and Accountability Ordinance—BGA maintains that further privatization in the city risks losing jobs for public employees, which can, in turn, lead to weakened Chicago neighborhoods. “To increase transparency and expose the effects of privatization, Sawyer’s ordinance calls for public City Council hearings and a cost-effectiveness study on all city contracts worth more than $250,000. The ordinance also protects privately contracted workers by guaranteeing them wages and benefits equal to the public employees they are replacing. That measure is intended to either deter layoffs or prevent overall city wage levels from declining if the privatization in question nevertheless goes through. In These Times

IN: IU Will Not Privatize Parking Operations. Indiana University Trustees announced today they will not privatize parking operations on the university’s Bloomington and Indianapolis campuses….“We conducted a thorough and inclusive analysis of both the financial and nonfinancial aspects of a long-term parking agreement and, in the end, concluded that the valuation of our parking assets simply wasn’t compelling enough to justify losing control of our operations for 50 years,”IU Vice President and Chief Financial Officer MaryFrances McCourt said. Indiana Public Media

MD: Maryland delays Board of Public Works vote on Purple Line proposal. The Maryland Department of Transportation delayed a vote by a state board on whether to seek a private consortium to build, run and help pay for a light-rail Purple Line because the agency needs more time to prepare the highly complex plan, a spokeswoman said Wednesday.  Washington Post

CA: Gov Brown Vetoes Bill Limiting Outsourcing of Court Jobs. In a veto message Monday morning, Gov. Jerry Brown said a new California law restricting trial courts’ ability to outsource jobs “goes too far.” The bill passed last month, AB 566, placed conditions on courts when outsourcing court jobs to private contractors. It required a showing that outsourcing would in fact save money.  Courthouse News Service

LA: Ascension, Livingston okay private toll road study. Ascension and Livingston parish leaders have agreed to allow a Los Angeles company to study the economic feasibility of a 2-mile elevated toll road linking the parishes that would be privately owned. The Advocate