Mt. Vernon Register-News

Milestones

July 1, 2014

Red Cross must reveal how it spent donations from Sandy

Whenever there is some global catastrophe, we break out the checkbook, sending a donation to the Red Cross. Whether it’s an earthquake in Haiti or a tsunami in Japan, many people’s natural inclination is to send money to one of world’s best-known charities.

Superstorm Sandy hit the Northeast U.S. in October 2012, devastating parts of New Jersey and New York. It did damage up and down the eastern seaboard. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the total property damage amounted to $65 billion.

Americans are especially generous following natural disasters. They sent $312 million in donations to the American Red Cross after the storm. Unfortunately, the charity hasn’t been very forthcoming in how it spent that money. It seems to be stonewalling ProPublica, which has been writing about how post-Sandy money has been spent. It reports:

Just how badly does the American Red Cross want to keep secret how it raised and spent over $300 million after Hurricane Sandy? The charity has hired a fancy law firm (Gibson Dunn) to fight a public request we filed with New York state, arguing that information about its Sandy activities is a “trade secret.” The Red Cross’ “trade secret” argument has persuaded the state to redact some material, though it’s not clear yet how much since the documents haven’t yet been released.

That’s right, the Red Cross has lawyered up. I find it hard to believe that how a charity spends its money could possibly be a trade secret.

Some disasters are more personal than others, as was Sandy to those of us who live within a hundred miles or so from where the storm made landfall.

Where I live on the North Shore of Long Island, New York, the damage was mostly downed trees, damaged roofs, flooding and loss of power. In our house, we treated the lack of electricity as an adventure at first, with everybody including the dogs sleeping in one warm bed. But as the temperature dropped, the lack of hot water became a problem, and soon after, the fun factor faded. We were fortunate that my sister’s neighborhood a few towns over had underground power lines, so we decamped there for a few days for warm meals and hot showers. (Our house had no electricity for 12 days).

Text Only
Milestones
  • 7-26 millenbine anniversary Millenbine Donnie and Cheryl Milllenbine of Dahlgren will celebrate 40 years of marriage on Aug. 2, 2014. The were married in Mt. Vernon.Donnie and Cheryl are the parents of three children, Jodi (Brandon) Reyling, Donnie R (Sarah) Millenbine and Kelli of Dahlgr

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-24 hawkins - bagwell wedding Hawkins -- Bagwell After a proposal on a beach in Tahiti, Lacie Hawkins and Gene Bagwell were united in marriage in a backyard wedding on the Fourth of July in the backyard of the bride’s parent’s home.A beach theme was used for the celebration and guests were encourag

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-19 weatherford - costa engagement Weatherford -- Costa Hannah Weatherford and Patrick Costa, along with their parents, announce their engagement and upcoming wedding.Hannah is the daughter of Rick and Stacey Weatherford of Woodlawn. Patrick is the son of Louis and Sharon Costa of Woodlawn.An Oct. 18 wedd

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-18 kiefer anniversary 2 Kiefer Mr. and Mrs. John Kiefer of Belle Rive will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary on July 27, 2014.John William Kiefer and Jamie Carmella Watkins were married July 11, 1964, in Carbondale at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church.John is the son of th

    July 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • 7-17 jeffrey and christina engagement No Headline Provided Jeffrey Payton and Christina Teresa are pleased to announce their upcoming wedding.Christina is the daughter of Robert Lyday of Dix and Rachael Lyday of Woodlawn. She is the granddaughter of Ron and Marsha McKinney of Ina and the late Gary Edmison.Je

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Smith Paul and Patsy Smith of Mt. Vernon will celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary on July 18. The couple were married July 18, 1954, at Southwest Church of Christ by the Rev. J. Parsons.They are the parents of two children, Michael D. Smith and wife D

    July 16, 2014

  • 7-15 barbour anniversary Barbour Dewayne and Becky (Roberson) Barbour, Mt. Vernon, celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary on July 14. They were married July 14, 1979, at the Unity Chapel in Denver.Becky is the daughter of the late Bill and Helen (Piper) Roberson of Mt. Vernon. De

    July 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-15 jeffrey and christina engagement No Headline Provided Jeffrey Payton and Christina Teresa are pleased to announce their upcoming wedding.Christina is the daughter of Robert Lyday of Alix and Rachael Lyday of Woodlawn. She is the granddaughter of Ron and Marsha McKinney of Ian and the late Gary Edmison.J

    July 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-12 Bates-Kidd engagement pic Bates -- Kidd John T. Bates Sr. and Santamara L. Kidd would like to announce their engagement and upcoming marriage.A private ceremony will be held and a reception will follow on Sunday, July 20, 2014, from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Rolland W. Lewis Community Building.

    July 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-10 carter heck engagement pic Carter -- Heck Maquel Renee Carter of Bonnie and Gilbert Louis Heck of Mt. Vernon announce their engagement.The bride-to-be is the daughter of Traci Graham and the late Russell Graham of Bonnie and James Carter of Mt. Vernon. She is a 2013 graduate of Rend Lake Col

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

Twitter Updates
Facebook
Stocks