Public Authorities Information Clearinghouse Launched by the Government Law Center of Albany Law School

Jan 19, 2010, 10:40 ET from Albany Law School

Web site catalogues information about Public Authorities nationwide

ALBANY, N.Y., Jan. 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Albany Law School's Government Law Center (GLC) today announced the launch of the nationwide Public Authorities Information Clearinghouse (PAIC) (, designed to help interested parties navigate through the documents that pertain to the governance of public authority.

"Public authorities are the fastest growing form of government in the United States," said Scott Fein, the project's director and partner at Whiteman Osterman and Hanna. "These authorities raise funds using tax exempt bonds to provide mass transportation and roadways, government buildings, power, water, and sewage treatment. The question is how best to enhance their transparency and governance.  This Clearinghouse is a step in that direction."

Public authorities exist at local, state and federal levels of government; examples in New York state include the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the New York State Thruway Authority. These entities provide a corporate structure legally separate from government and financed by user fees. They also manage capital assets and make long term capital investment decisions.

"In New York state alone, more than 600 public authorities hold 95 percent of the state's debt, to the tune of $140 billion," said Professor Patricia Salkin, the director of the GLC. "As public authorities continue to become more prevalent in our daily lives, we need the tools to help understand them, including their power to incur debt, the transparency of their operations and their political autonomy."

Currently, the Public Authorities Information Clearinghouse indexes hundreds of books, academic publications, pieces of legislation, court cases, reports, videos and news articles. The Web site, which includes a state-by-state index of content, will continue to expand. The site also contains information on accessing the programs of the Government Law Center's Public Authorities Project, including training and research by the Center.  Current research papers address topics such as: Ethics and the Workforce, Financial Disclosure and Screening Potential Public Authorities Conflicts and Diversity on the Boards of State Public Authorities.

The Government Law Center of Albany Law School is the first and most comprehensive government law program at any ABA-approved law school in the country. Albany Law School is a small, independent private school in the heart of New York state's capital since 1851. Visit

CONTACT: Nick Crounse at 518-445-3208 or

SOURCE Albany Law School