REPORT: Most federal advisory committee meetings now held in secret

When federal agencies make grants or design new regulations, they often rely on panels of experts — including industry representatives — for counsel. But knowing precisely what these government-created advisory committees are pushing has been shrouded in secrecy: A new congressional report shows that most of the committee meetings are now held behind closed doors.

The analysis from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service finds that last year, almost three quarters of all advisory committee meetings were closed to the public. While President Barack Obama asserts that he has created “the most transparent administration in history,” the number of closed meetings was the highest percentage in the decade’s worth of data the congressional researchers studied. Continue…