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    • 12
    Live AMA (Ask Me Anything) With Local Tech Bootcamp CEO's
    We're excited to announce our first-ever live AMA! But what is a "live" AMA? Just like AMA's on Reddit you'll ask your questions below in the comment section. Then our panel of CEO's will be answering your questions live at The Startup Building on October 13, 2015! Seats are expected to fill up fast so you'll want to hurry and RSVP by visiting our Eventbrite page. Tickets are completely free.

    We have CEO's from Utah's hottest tech bootcamps, (John Richards of Startup IgnitionCahlan Sharp of DevMountain, and Brandon Hassler of Market Campus) taking your questions. You can ask them anything related, but not limited to, tech, business, entrepreneurship, coding, digital marketing, and education in general in the comment section below.

    Moderating the event will be Sid Krommenhoek, Managing Partner at Peak Ventures. Before the event begins we'll be taking the best (and most upvoted) questions below and asking our CEO panel. 

    In order for your question to be answered at the October 13th event, you must ask it below beforehand! The panel will not be taking additional questions at the live AMA.

    Don't forget to get your free ticket for the event by clicking here. If you have any questions about this event don't hesitate to reach out to us at
      • 5
      Alex Whitt This question is for DevMountain. As we get closer to an almost inevitable tech bubble burst, will developers find themselves struggling in the job market? It seems with all of the overvalued tech startups either closing or having major layoffs, there are going to be A LOT of developers and not near as many job openings.
      • 5
      Brittany Gibbs We're starting to see more female CEO's in today's society. However, not all women have the desire to "work up the corporate ladder" to a leadership role at a big company. What advice do you have for moms who have family obligations (raising kids with a working husband) but also want to take their passion and turn it into a business?
      • 6
      Brian Hansen With so much information being freely available online, how do you convince potential students that your bootcamp is worth the investment?
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    • 11
    Provo City to Launch Citizen-Initiated Legislation Program
    The following is an official press release I just received from Provo City:

    "Provo, Utah, March 24, 2015 – The Provo City Council has officially opened the first phase of the Provo People’s Lobby, an innovative program that allows Provo residents to generate legislation to be presented to the City Council for consideration. This creates a groundbreaking opportunity for citizen involvement in the legislative process by generating proposals from a grass roots level. 

    Provo residents of voting age will be able to submit their own ideas of issues to work on as well as give feedback and lend support to the ideas of others. This first phase will continue until April 15, 2015, at

    The second phase of the program forms the Provo People’s Lobby, a task force made up of 34 participants (one from each Provo neighborhood), who will work together online to determine which issue to work on. With the help of NationBuilder and Loomio online platforms as well as moderators from the Brigham Young University Political Science Department, the people’s lobby will spend two weeks deliberating and formulating a legislative proposal to send to the City Council. This process is also being overseen by Jeff Swift, Ph.D., who introduced the concept of “The People’s Lobby.” 

    At the May 19, 2015, Work Meeting, the Lobby will present its proposal to the City Council in anticipation of a formal vote at a June 2015 Council Meeting. The Lobby is then dissolved and the process can begin again with a new group of participants selected to take on a new issue."
      • 2
      Brittany Gibbs This is awesome, really like the push by Provo City to get more citizens involved. I think this new platform will help as well. Keep up the great work guys!
      • 1
      Alex Whitt It's a great idea but I don't see it working long-term. There is no transparency from what I can see. Citizens submit ideas and then big brother decides if they want to listen. How is this different than the city's contact form?
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    • 10
    Why Most Provo Residents Just Don't Give a Damn About Elections
    I've been reading a lot of articles from the local media about Provo's pathetic voter turnout. The last numbers I read showed that 7% of residents actually voted this past week. Why is that? Many of the comments I read on these articles as well as on social media tend to chastise the residents. Is it really our fault? I didn't vote, and I'll tell you why I don't plan to until the problem is fixed.

    The personal dilemma I face is that I don't want to vote in the wrong person. I feel that way because I honestly can't find out what each candidates true agenda is. Even when "researching" the candidates, I can't make a decision. Let me summarize what every candidate stands for:

    • They love Provo.
    • They have a family and want to live here.
    • They want to improve education.
    • They want to lower taxes.
    • They want to make Provo more business friendly.
    • They want to keep Provo's "momentum" going.
    • They love Provo.

    Put simply, Provo elections are about as informative as high school elections. Candidates stick to fluffy "feel good" answers and never actually discuss details. And why should they? The local media does a crappy job at forcing these candidates to talk about real issues our cities face. Daily Herald, where the hell are you guys? You can spend all night reporting election results but you can't throw together a simple debate between the candidates? You can't pull candidates in and question them on real issues? Force them to stand out and answer for their past voting record?

    Until we have an election with candidates talking about real issues (and a real media company who's willing to ask hard questions) like solving panhandling/homelessness, attracting more retail to Provo, keeping the growing tech companies in our city, paying for the expensive Rec Center that our leaders pushed through, you won't have my vote. I know each candidate has a plan in their mind, but why run the risk of losing votes when you can just run social ads and win a popularity contest?
      • 3
      Rachel Whipple You clearly don't know anything about any of the candidates if you think your bullet point list applies to all of the candidates. I met all of them for Citywide, District 3 and District 5, and even hosted an event where anyone interested could come and hear the candidates responses to those and other questions on "real issues." I passed out 16,000 flyers in my neighborhood inviting people to attend. We had fewer than 50 people show up, including the candidates. I absolutely think the appalling low voter turnout is the fault of our many residents who didn't bother to become informed and vote, but their lack of engagement (as typified by the OP author) just makes my vote count for that much more. To blame others for your shoddy "research" (it is good you put "researching" in quotes, because you obviously didn't do any real research) and lack of engagement is puerile at best. Do you seriously think that interviews run by the Daily Herald would be more substantive than the video interviews of the candidates available through the city's website? Please.

      You say you won't vote until the problem is fixed. I think that's true. But you don't seem to realize that you are part of the problem, and you have the means to fix it yourself. Nobody's going to do it for you. Rather than apologize for you unpatriotic lack of engagement or resolve to step up and demand real information on your own, I'm sure you'll just keep blaming anyone and everyone else.
      • 2
      Marc Steed Alex, why don't you be the catalyst for the change you write about? Give the city council candidates an invitation to come to your house, invite some friends, and have a great time peeling away the layers of similarity to find the differences you seek. I promise you won't be disappointed.
      • 5
      Alex Whitt I appreciate the replies from both @Rachel Whipple and @Marc Steed. I'm not arguing that efforts haven't been made to better educate the public, it's just that the efforts aren't effective. As much as I love politics, I would never in a million years go to someone's house to discuss local candidates. That only draws in a very very small (and usually older) crowd that enjoys that type of political interaction. I'm a millennial, if the information isn't online, I don't know about it. We have events such as the one Rachel threw, I see events from the "Our Provo" group but the problem is these types of events just are not attractive to the general public. Imagine if the media both left and right didn't cover the Presidential elections, we would know virtually nothing about the candidates or what is going on. Not only does the media cover the elections, but they ask hard questions on a daily basis. "Candidate X, you say you stand for this, but what specifically would you do to make that happen?" "Candidate B, you mentioned last week on your blog that you are trying to stop X yet your voting record shows that you've been supporting it for the past 5 years. How do you explain that?" This are the questions that need to be asked. I know you will argue that if I attended this old fashioned get togethers that I just may hear the answers, but this stuff NEEDS to be online. Provo is a young tech city and uses the internet more than any other city in America, so why on earth are we still trying to put together offline events and cater towards the 60+ audience?

      Those city videos, while a step in the right direction, where nothing but a bunch of softball questions thrown towards the candidates. The city did the best they could. It's not their job to ask the hard questions because that is not what we pay them to do. Local media like The Herald has the time and audience to accomplish what all of us can't. Now, knowing the Herald I can sadly say that they will never do that, simply because they are bound by advertisers, many of whom are tied directly to city officials and candidates. Perhaps I could propose @Provo Buzz do something next election? This seems like the only platform that isn't tied to advertisers and really has nothing to lose in this situation.
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    • 9
    Provo City Officials Relish Over Local Business Closing
    Yesterday Matthew Taylor, who is getting paid handsomely by local tax payers, has been plastering all over social media the news that The Hookah Collection, a local business in the downtown Provo area, will be closing and leaving the city. Matthew couldn't be more excited to see a local business leave.

    I get that the Hookah Collection isn't a popular choice among the predominantly Mormon community, but what about that "Welcome Home" attitude Provo City supposedly has? Heck, Mayor John Curtis himself "liked" the post from Matthew Taylor. What better way for John to tell the world "Welcome Home"? Are we seriously at this point? It's bad enough our own Deputy Mayor publicly mocked local feedback, we now have city officials (including our own Mayor) publicly excited about the fact a local business has closed. 

    Several citizens agree and have posted their thoughts on social media:

    "What does it say to potential business owners when a director of a city department posts something like this on a public forum? It says that Provo City is anti-business. Whether or not that is true, and whether or not the business aligns with your personal belief system is irrelevant. Perception is reality. The fact that you are applauding any business that leaves Downtown is inappropriate." - Chad Pritchard

    "Seconding Chad's take on the situation. I just noticed they'd moved when we drove by yesterday...and the first thing I thought of was how everyone's always complaining that businesses are leaving Provo and especially downtown...and how we supposedly want and welcome I thought to myself, "Oh, no...another one gone?" And wondered why they moved to Orem. We live near downtown, and my husband (who's Turkish) and I checked out the place soon after it opened. They had lots more than just hookahs...which we were happy to discover, as we were looking for some gifts and also possible decorations to add to our home and our still-dreaming-about Turkish/Middle Eastern cafe. The owners and employees were friendly and helpful...and other customers I've seen in and around there over the years have in no way been problematic for others in any way (which I can't say the same about at other places in and around town, in my experience, both as far as the owners/workers and the customers are concerned). I'm sad...on a number of see some of the reactions to their leaving." - Deb Tokarewich

    Matthew Taylor, after realizing the hole he just dug himself, tried backing out of the excitement by claiming his opinions were made as a resident, not a city official. Really? 

    "Chad, I am a resident of the Downtown Provo neighborhoods and an employee of the Provo City Council. As an employee of the Council I say very little about current Council policy issues on these sites. This is not a Council policy issue. So my sentiments posted here are mine as a resident. Do you believe my association with the City restrains my free speech rights as a citizen? I personally view this business as detrimental to the overall success of all Downtown businesses, and therefore it is a PRO business sentiment. Best Motel in my neighborhood is a bad acting business. I will be happy if they shut down, too, because they are detrimental to everything around them. It's not about the people who frequented this establishment, it is about the general effect on the overall success of the area. I have heard enough sentiments from people to conclude that this business was not helping the positive direction that Downtown Provo is headed in." - Matthew Taylor

    Sorry buddy, but regardless "which Matthew" we had the privilege of hearing from, that's pretty messed up to go out of your way to repost to several social feeds about your excitement of a diverse business closing. 

    Personally, I couldn't care less about The Hookah Collection leaving Provo, but it sickens me when several paid city officials are publicly relishing in the fact that a local business has decided to leave the city.

    Welcome Home!
      • 2
      Brittany Gibbs It is sad to see one of the few businesses that attracted a non-LDS crowd leave the city. I'm trying to figure out why city officials would delight over this. We're they not paying their taxes or something?
      • 1
      Alex Whitt How did I miss this?
      • 1
      Nyanyo Or they could be leaving just because the there isn't a large market in Provo? Not much you can do about that. We want businesses that do well in Provo. Just because you're a "diverse" business doesn't mean anything. Seriously would be great if alot of the run down businesses on 3rd south would move out as well.
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    • 9
    Are Provo City Officials Crossing The Line?
    Last night I noticed a post by Diane B. Christensen on the Facebook group "Our Provo." In my personal opinion, Diane and much of the Our Provo group can sometimes be a bit extreme, but this post definitely carried some weight. 

    To summarize, Diane spoke of recent word that Corey Norman, who has a negative reputation when it comes to dealing with local citizens, has been contacting candidates for the upcoming Provo City elections to visit city offices for interviews that will be filmed and edited to "inform" the public. Diane makes the point that if was a neutral third party like the media, something like this would be great. However it's not the business of administrative officials to be creating campaign videos for legislative candidates.

    Put simply, Corey Norman, who time is being paid for by the voters tax dollars, is independently picking questions without public input (controlling the conversation) and also oversees how the final videos are edited. 

    Am I going crazy or should city officials not be involved in campaigning for candidates?
      • 2
      Alex Whitt Very interesting. I'd be interested to see an official response from the city on how this situation is being handled. I do agree though, there seems to be a lot of room for "politics" when you have elected officials controlling the conversation.
      • 1
      James Harrow I think the overall intentions are good by the administration in this project, but I would agree that you run too many risks. While I like Mayor Curtis and many in his office, I do question some of the closed door meetings I hear about and who he chooses to include in his circle. You could argue that anybody could push an agenda such as the Herald (who's controlled by certain advertisers) but the difference is they are not publicly funded by our tax dollars. The Herald could come up and openly support a candidate and I would be 100% fine because they are using my tax dollars to do it.

      I'm sure these videos will be very neutral and fair, but the bottom line is Provo City is stepping over the line when they start to use our money for campaigning, even if it's equally distributed.
      • 3
      Melanie McCoard Are Provo City officials crossing the line? In my opinion, yes. Last week, the mayor had an open forum on Facebook (Interestingly, it was scheduled the same day and time as the Council Policy Lunch.) I asked him if he intended to openly endorse, and financially support, any Council candidate. (He has accumulated a very healthy balance in his personal PAC called "Godd Government for Provo.) He did not answer, but made off-handed remarks instead. I repeated the question. He still didn't answer, even though his invitation to the public was : "ask me anything." (He should have included, "I may not answer.") Afterwards, he messaged me his thoughts on the question, which evidently he does not want to go public. However he did end his explanation with this: "If it's important to you to share my position on supporting candidates you may share the following: Like any resident in the city and former Provo Mayors I feel a duty and a right to seek out and support candidates that will move Provo forward in a positive direction." I believe that John Curtis is using his position, and the resources of the city, to publicize the candidacy of an otherwise unknown man. My response to him was , "Mayor, you wrote: 'I feel, like everyone else in the city, I have a right to and an obligation to lobby for candidates that will take the city in a good direction... I may jump in if I see a candidate who I feel is wrong for the City.' Does jumping in mean having Corey interview and film candidates to create educational voter videos? Does your right to lobby for candidates extend to using city equipment and personnel to create campaign material? I do not think so. You can endorse and even financially help individual candidates, but you must not use city time and resources to do it." If you agree, please message, text, or email the Mayor.
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    • 8
    Why is Carina Wytiaz being painted as a minority in Provo?
    Local elections have come and gone and now that the dust has settled it's time to examine how the race has gone. If you haven't had a chance to check out the results, you can do so by clicking here.

    One of the races I was paying close attention to was Carina Wytiaz taking on George Stewart for the City Wide II position. I've met both candidates and both are great people. I think either candidate would have done a great job.

    What made me so curious about this specific race was the fact that Courtney Kendrick, Provo City's Community Outreach Adviser handpicked by Mayor John Curtis himself, has gone through exhaustive efforts to paint Carina Wytiaz as minority in the race. If you aren't already familiar with the two, Courtney and Carina are two white women that live in Provo who love talking about social injustice. To be honest, I thought Carina had this race in the bag. She did everything right and dominated social media. So I was honestly shocked when I saw Carina didn't win.

    First Courtney wrote an "Open Letter to Provo" that claimed the culture in Provo doesn't respect women and how she doesn't want to raise her children in the Provo that she herself grew up in. Voting another woman in office could solve all of this.

    "In two weeks all of us will have an opportunity to vote pro-female" said Courtney in her post. So by voting for George Stewart we are essentially saying we are anti-female? 

    The day after Carina Wytiaz lost the election Courtney took her thoughts to the Provo Forward group on Facebook with this post:

    I am so proud Carina today. She ran a great campaign and represented Provo (social) progressives in a smart, confident way. In what is really good news, she only lost by 6% of the vote, signaling that the tides are changing here in Provo. She ran a race as an underdog and historically under-represented citizen--I think there were many people who doubted she could make up some a huge margin in the traditional votership here--and it was so close! I'm hopeful more than ever for Provo. And Carina, thank you for making a HUGE wave in turning the tide. Next election I hope to see more women, more people of color and more progressives jumping in to help grow Provo in smart, safe ways for everyone, now is the time!"

    Am I the only one going crazy here? Carina Wytiaz is a white woman who lives in arguably the whitest city in America. How on earth does that qualify her as an "under-represented citizen?" Even trying to play the "woman card" doesn't work. We have had dozens of women in office in my time living in Provo (including Courtney's own Mom) and we currently have two women in a city council position. I love Carina but she isn't exactly a trailblazer in local politics.

    Like I said before, I think Carina is a fantastic person. I would have been happy to see her win. I just hated seeing so many treat her like a special ed student. She's a woman and she is perfectly capable of winning a political race with any special help. It's sad that some are trying to guilt voters into electing a person solely because of their gender. Despite having arguably one of the largest ad spend budgets in the race, Carina barely lost the election. It was a fantastic race to watch and she did great. Being a woman wasn't her weakness, she lost primarily because she was going up against someone with a lot more professional experience. Could Carina have done a better job? Probably. But George Stewart was simply a safer choice for voters.
      • 3
      Alex Whitt That was an exciting race to watch. Props to Carina for putting up such a great fight. I'd be curious to see how much each candidate has spent on advertising. For a while I couldn't watch a YouTube video without watching that video above first.
      • 3
      Brittany Gibbs Wow I have never seen any of these posts before so that was certainly enlightening. I would agree that Courtney put to much emphasis on the fact that she's a woman and not enough on her qualifications on the position. As for the minority aspect of this post, I would venture to guess that was Courtney was referring to the fact that Carina was an open feminist/progressive running for office in Provo. Obviously a left-leaning candidate (regardless of gender) is going to have a tougher time getting elected in such a conservative area.
      • 2
      James Harrow The funny part about all of this is that Utah is by far one of the best states for women to live in. Majority of women WANT to be stay at home moms. Sure you are going to have a chunk of women that want a career and I think that is fantastic and it's highly supported in Utah. It's sad that we live in a world where women are being guilted into going back to work because they'll otherwise be painted as "weak."
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    • 8
    Video of Maggots in Subway Sandwich In Provo Going Viral
    Warning: The end of this video contains strong language. 

    A man pulled out his smartphone in a Provo, Utah Subway and started to film what appears to be maggots in his Subway sandwich as he talks to a Subway employee. The question is whether this video is real or not. Some people on Reddit aren't buying the story. One person on Reddit writes:

    "This is a setup. The veggies on the paper are fresh – the tomato is red and moist and the lettuce is green and crisp. THose are very late stage larva (look like gypsy moths to me) and in order to get that big, the veggies would have been so foul they’d look like a hot stew instead of freshly sliced. If the maggots were in the meat, it would have been slimy, and very warm to the touch. I think the guy is pulling a scam."

    Is this another poor couple in Provo trying to take advantage of the recent Jared Fogle news and pulling a scam? It's sad to say, but I know of a few people right here in Provo who have admitted to me or one of my friends that they have at least once tricked a restaurant into giving them free food by pulling things like this.

    What do you think?
      • 4
      Noah The employee completely mishandled this blatent setup.
      • 3
      Zach Collier I definitely think it's a setup. Nothing looks wrong with the sandwich. The only way that I could see this happening is if the night crew wasn't cleaning out the make line properly and bugs were growing underneath it - which would be terrible. But the lady totally mishandled it. You don't say, "If you don't stop freaking out you're not getting a refund." You refund that crap. FAST. haha
      • 3
      Alex Whitt Does nobody notice that the sandwich is like 80% gone? Seriously, who gets through the entire sandwich and then realizes their are worms? Bear Grylls would have slapped this kid and convinced him those worms were an added protein benefit.
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    • 8
    I'm camping out for the Provo parade tonight for the first time. What shoul...
    The title is pretty self-explanatory, but I keep hearing about how fun it is to stay up all night for the parade. I've never been super impressed with the parade, but many I talk to say they go more for the night before. What could possible be so great about it? Or is it all hype and no delivery?
      • 2
      Brittany Gibbs Honestly it's not that great. Let me step back, if you are under the age of 19 and want to pretend like your drunk without actually drinking, it's a blast. It's become a giant "Provo All-Star" hangout. Tonight will be even worse as the concert downtown will only bring in more of them.
      • 1
      Mike Romero I think it's really fun but don't think you are going to have a great spot for the parade. Come 9am tomorrow no matter how close you are to the road, a family WILL plop right in front of you with chairs and not feel a bit bad about it.
      • 2
      Alex Whitt I'm with [167475,Brittany Gibbs] on this one. 10 years ago it was genially a good time, now it's become a giant Chuck E. Cheese's party for all Utah County high schoolers.
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    • 7
    Have you ever noticed the arrow pointing down in BYU's logo?
    This has been pointed out before, but it's interesting to me how many people have never noticed this. Ute fans may argue that this arrow is fitting considering their struggling football program.

    If that isn't enough, does the fact that the Y is asymmetrical drive anybody else nuts?
      • 2
      Danny Guzman Do people really think BYU's program is struggling? 6-2 with a frosh QB. 10 straight bowls. Yeah they're not a sure playoff bid but is Utah?

      And the Y has been used since the 70's. Only seems new cause Crowton got rid of it.
      • 5
      Zach Collier Great. Now I can't unsee that arrow.
      • 2
      Jared Doesn't every letter Y ever have an arrow pointing down? Not really any way around that one...

      That Y is definitely funky though. Maybe it is suggesting that less people at BYU 'choose the right' and more the left, thus why the right portion is skinnier. Or that the 'straight and narrow path' to Heaven is skinnier than the path to Hell. Who knows...
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    • 7
    Get Your Kate Kelly Vanity Plates Now!
    Saw this gem tonight and I felt like it would be selfish to not share. Now that you know you can get an OW (Ordain Women) or Kate Kelly themed Vanity plate, there are only two questions:

    1. How fast can you get it?

    2. What OW themed plates are left?

    I'm deciding between: 



    THE OW

    What should I choose? Any other ideas?!
      • 1
      Alex Whitt Hahahaha this just made my night. Where did you see this?
      • 3
      Alex Whitt So I think that car belongs to Kate Kelly's mom?
      • 1
      Brittany Gibbs Ugh, that organization is so ridiculous. I feel so terrible for that Mom having to drive around in those plates. The OW movement is full of insecure women who feel the need to "hold something" in order to feel equal or important. It goes everything against true/pure feminism. Why can't we embrace who we are as women and quit trying to compare ourselves against men?
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    • 7
    Central Square to Become Hotel
    So today, as I was walking past Central Square, I decided to call the property manager to see how much they were selling it for. I was told that they closed on a deal last week, and that the building was going to be torn down and turned into office space, another parking structure, and a hotel.


      • 3
      James Harrow This must have been the hotel-that-must-not-be-named that was discussed at the event John Curtis held for business owners. Glad something is being done, right now it is a sore sight to look at. Can anybody get the scoop on the name of hotel going in? It seems John Curtis got in a little trouble last time a Provo Buzz user broke the news about At Home going in East Bay. Can we do it a second time?
      • 3
      Alex Whitt Oh I am on it :)
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      Zach Collier Haha. I love that we're a community of local whistleblowers.
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    • 7
    Can Provo Really "End" Homelessness?
    This past Monday Provo City held the "Mayor's Night at the Rec Center" where we helped fight homelessness by riding water sliders, chilling in hot tubs, enjoying an air conditioned building and eating endless amounts of food. But seriously, I applaud the efforts and really do think this is a great thing. Will it "end" homelessness like the goal is? Of course not, but $25,000 is better than $0 right?

    I do have a few questions if anybody has answers. I'm always weary of charities just because so many of them pocket a good chuck of the change. I'm curious about two things that would make me feel more comfortable donating:

    Who is deciding how the money will be used?
    The city kept that information very general by saying "The distribution of money will be decided by a panel of informed community members and case managers, so you can be assured that the money goes only to the deserving." I'd like to believe that, but based on some of the "informed" people the city is paying for consultation/advice I get nervous if I don't see actual names.

    What percentage of the money will actual go to fight homelessness?
    Even though these organizations are "non-profit" there is still a crap load of profit going on internally. I know several president's of charities here in Utah who make six-figure incomes through their charities. Is there public information on how much of my dollar will go to the actual cause? I've seen some charities like this take upwards of 70% of each dollar to cover "costs" before it even gets to the cause.
      • 1
      Steve This doesn't answer your question but this is a TED talk that changed the way I think about charities.
      I used to think about it more how you have explained in your post.