More transparency needed in public development deals

Public-benefit corporations, which have been around for hundreds of years, have never been so roundly reviled as they are today. Though they have in many cases richly earned their bad reputations, that doesn’t mean they can’t — and don’t — sometimes serve a useful purpose. Usually created by statute, these government-owned entities start out as having specific, narrow functions to serve a public good. But they often grow far beyond their original purposes, and because the usual governmental constraints are absent the possibility of corruption seems rarely distant.

“The Orange County Industrial Development Agency, with its mission . . .


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