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BuzzFeed’s Rosie grey is reporting that Occupy Wall Street is looking, of all things, for an accountant:The [Occupy Wall Street] Accounting Working Group has interviewed four candidates to oversee its finances, members of the group told BuzzFeed Tuesday, and the accounting committee has scheduled a meeting tonight to discuss options. But the decision still has to get past the General Assembly, Occupy’s central decision-making body — and the hire might be a departure from the movement’s decentralized, anti-authoritarian style.
Occupy currently has $330,000 in cash, with $100,000 of that dedicated to a bail fund for jailed members.
While smaller scale money issues have been a part of movement almost from inception, the move to hire the organisation’s first employee is a reaction to the increasing size and complexity of their financial position. OWS had previously relied on pro-bono accounting advice.
While members acknowledged it would be a ‘hard sell’, Jeff Smith, a member of the media team, said the hiring was in fact in keeping with one of OWS’ basic tenets: transparency. The goal is to “remove any issues of transparency by just kind of paying someone to do it, like an independent auditor in a way.”
OWS is currently a non-profit 501(c)3 and will likely owe no taxes. However, returns must still be filled with the IRS and the general sentiment among those leading the search for increased accounting expertise is that internal disputes over money need to be minimized. “We’ve seen how many problems money has caused in all other areas of OWS,” Smith said to BuzzFeed.