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News Post | Transportation

Breaking the Silence on Transportation and the Climate

Transportation policy-makers in most states and at the federal level have simply never seen it as their business to consider, much less act to reduce, the climate impacts of their infrastructure investment decisions. The Obama administration’s actions last week, however tentative, suggest that that is about to change.

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News Post | Transportation

All Americans Deserve Clean Air to Breathe, On Earth Day and Every Day | Sean Doyle

U.S. DOT asks if we should measure global warming pollution from transportation.

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News Post | Democracy

U.S. PIRG's Top 5 Change-Makers

This week, Time Magazine came out with its annual  list, but what about the men and women who made a difference for regular Americans on the issues facing all of us?

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News Release | U.S.PIRG Education Fund | Consumer Protection, Make VW Pay, Transportation

Framework for VW Settlement Announced

Statement by Mike Litt, Consumer Program Advocate at U.S. PIRG Education Fund, on todays announced VW settlement. For more details on what a strong settlement agreement ought to look like, please see the open letter that we released earlier this week with other consumer and environmental groups.

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News Release | U.S. PIRG | Financial Reform

Groups Offer Consumer Tips After Target Data Breach

We joined other leading groups to issue consumer tips after the big retailer Target had 40 million credit and debit card numbers stolen. Our main message: Don't panic. Don't pay for over-priced credit monitoring. Do check your checking and credit card accounts regularly and get your free credit reports provided by law.

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News Release | U.S. PIRG | Consumer Protection, Higher Ed

U.S. PIRG Applauds CFPB Call for Greater Disclosure

Washington, DC — Today, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to publicly disclose all of their card agreements with colleges and universities. Currently, institutions only need to disclose agreements regarding credit cards, but not debit, checking, or prepaid cards.

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News Release | U.S. PIRG | Budget, Tax

Murray-Ryan Budget Deal Cuts Some Waste, but Misses Chance to Close Corporate Tax Loopholes

With our nation facing tough budget choices, U.S. PIRG applauds Senator Murray and Congressman Ryan for naming a few names when it comes to wasteful programs and special interest giveaways. This is the first step to ending the arbitrary sequester approach to budgeting, which throws the baby out with the bathwater...Unfortunately, the budget plan fails to close a single corporate tax loophole. This is a huge missed opportunity...There’s much more room for lawmakers to find common ground by ending wasteful programs while preserving those that serve the public interest, and closing the loopholes that only benefit special interests.

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News Release | U.S. PIRG | Consumer Protection

Advocates Decry Harm Done to Consumers by Forced Arbitration

On date of CFPB field hearing in Dallas to release report on forced arbitration clauses in consumer contracts, U.S. PIRG, Americans for Financial Reform, National Consumer Law Center, National Association of Consumer Advocates and Public Citizen issue joint release. From the release: “Unfair arbitration clauses encourage unfair corporate practices and sloppy customer service,” said Ed Mierzwinski of U.S. PIRG. “If your customers cannot take you to court, why should you care about their complaints? We urge the CFPB to act quickly to ban forced arbitration clauses in financial products and services contracts.”

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News Post | Financial Reform

We Tell the Financial Regulators: Don’t Let Big Banks Make Taxpayer-Backed Bets | Ed Mierzwinski

Last night, U.S. PIRG and the AFL-CIO joined Americans for Financial Reform in a detailed comment letter urging issuance of a strong Volcker rule. It's a that basically comes down to this: We tell the financial regulators: don’t let big banks make taxpayer-backed bets.

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News Post | Financial Reform

CFPB To Visit NYC and More Consumer News of the Week, In Case You Missed It | Ed Mierzwinski

Just a few of the interesting consumer stories I am following this week: to talk about checking accounts (Feb. 22)... Meanwhile, Citibank charged some consumers twice to pay bills only once ()...Consumer groups call for a real recall of Bumbo baby seat ()...Mortgage settlement is a good first step (PIRG statement)...House opponents ratchet up attacks on new CFPB ()...Over-priced "Who will pay your credit card if you die, get sick or get laid off?" products pay out only 21 cents on the dollar ()...More on the CFPB's latest semi-annual report ()...PIRG, Demos document rise of the Super-PACS (MS-NBC)...And finally, "Enron" -- a musical theater production about corporate crime, re-opens in Washington State ().

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News Post | Consumer Protection

PIRG, Others Urge CPSC Recall of Bumbo Baby Seat Due to Skull Fracture Risk | Ed Mierzwinski

Over at the explains why CALPIRG, U.S. PIRG, Kids In Danger and other leading groups have asked the Consumer Product Safety Commission, in a letter, to recall the Bumbo baby seat. Previous , including labeling the seat with warnings, haven't prevented an alarming number of injuries, including over thirty skull fractures.

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News Post | Consumer Protection

Encouraging news on HUD/state AG settlement with big mortgage servicers | Ed Mierzwinski

Update: The terms of the settlement, which was this morning, are at the page . We are reading it now. Original: If I am reading the overnight news stories correctly ( and and ), it appears that negotiators have clarified that the well-publicized settlement between HUD and state AGs and the nation's 5 largest mortgage servicers will not release the big banks from claims related to their activities with the mysterious entity known as MERS that aided and abetted their illegal foreclosures. If so, this is a big deal in ultimately holding the big banks fully accountable.

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News Post | Consumer Protection

Airline passenger rights reforms finally take off, heading to President's desk | Ed Mierzwinski

PIRG-backed reforms designed to guarantee that passengers stranded in planes sitting on runways are not treated like cattle have been passed by the House and Senate and are expected to be signed by the president as part of FAA reauthorization (). The reforms are largely based on the work of former stranded passenger Kate Hanni and her campaign for an Airline Passenger Bill of Rights .

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DEFEND THE CFPB

Tell your senators to oppose the “Financial CHOICE Act,” which would gut Wall Street reforms and destroy the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as we know it.

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