FOI and Open Government News Syndicate content

Texas police withheld records of their son’s death. Now they know why

April 21 -- State law says a police agency isn’t required to turn over records for incidents that don’t result in a conviction. Graham, who’d been charged with assaulting a police officer after the confrontation, had died before his case could be litigated. Continue...

Georgia high court hears arguments in nonprofit hospital/Open Records case

April 21 -- The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday heard arguments on the high-profile case, which involves Northside’s rejection of requests for information about financial documents and other matters. Continue...

Requesting public records from NYC’s education department? Be prepared to wait 103 days

April 21 -- Between April 2015 and April 2016, the education department received 1,071 public records requests. Some were either fulfilled or denied in a matter of days, but nearly half the requests they answered took 60 days or longer to be resolved. Seventeen percent dragged on over six months. Continue...

Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas: Call for entries for 2017 Spirit of FOI Awards

April 20 -- The FOI Foundation of Texas is pleased to announce 2017 guidelines for the Nancy Monson Spirit of FOI Award contest. The contest is open to newspaper, broadcast and online media. The Spirit of FOI Award recognizes outstanding work in promoting open government and the public’s right to know. Continue...

Vermont ACLU sues border agency over secrecy on travel ban

April 20 -- The Vermont chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union filed suit Wednesday seeking documents from U.S. Customs and Border Protection detailing how President Donald Trump’s travel ban was implemented on the northern border. Continue...

Classified Directives Listings Disappear from DOD and JCS Websites

April 20 -- FOIA requesters who relied on lists of classified directives published by both the Defense Department and the Joint Chiefs of Staff to know what documents to file FOIA requests for may now be out of luck. In a transparency backslide, both the DOD and JCS websites no longer publish lists of classified directives and instructions, making it impossible to know what to FOIA. Continue...

As Trump Inquiries Flood Ethics Office, Director Looks To House For Action

April 19 -- Office of Government Ethics Director Walter Shaub Jr. is calling on the chairman of House Oversight Committee to become more engaged in overseeing ethics questions in the Trump administration. In an interview with NPR on Monday, Shaub said public inquiries and complaints involving Trump administration conflicts of interest and ethics have been inundating his tiny agency, which has only advisory power. Continue...

D.C. Police Body Camera Update: A Year of Experience Shows None of the Problems Forecast In Mayor's Push to Close Access

April 19 -- Since public access opened over a year ago, FOIA requests for video from Metropolitan Police body-worn cameras (BWC) have numbered just over sixty and redacting those released so far has cost only $25,000. Continue...

ProPublica: Secret Hospital Inspections May Become Public at Last

April 19 -- The public could soon get a look at confidential reports about errors, mishaps and mix-ups in the nation’s hospitals that put patients’ health and safety at risk, under a groundbreaking proposal from federal health officials. Continue...

Syracuse, NY City Hall wants to make it easier for people to look at its data

April 18 -- Under the new policy, the city would release information on things like outstanding code violations, location of potholes and other data routinely sought by residents. Currently, access to most of the city's cache of information requires a Freedom of Information request, which goes through the city law department and can take months to process. Continue...

Mississippi Outlaws Personal Use of Campaign Funds

April 18 -- Legislation that would prohibit politicians from using their campaign finance funds for personal use was signed into law by Gov. Phil Bryant Tuesday in his state Capitol office. Mississippi was one of a handful of states where politicians could spend their campaign finance funds on personal items. Continue...

Kansas: Woman awarded for keeping local government information open to public

April 18 -- The Kansas Sunshine Coalition for Open Government presented its 2017 Friend of Open Government award to Debbie Miller of Independence, Kansas. The group says Miller has pressed her local government for openness over the past several years. Continue...

Wage theft to be included in Colorado Open Records Act

April 17 -- Gov. John Hickenlooper has signed into law a bill that allows the public to know if an employer steals wages from his or her workers. The law, signed Thursday, allows citizens to find out if they're doing business with, or considering a job with, an offender. Continue...

Sarasota, Fla. Montessori school under investigation for alleged Sunshine Law violation

April 17 -- The state attorney's office is now investigating an alleged sunshine law violation at a Suncoast charter school. This follows an increasingly tense dispute between the school and parents of a former student. Continue...

Colorado: ACLU files FOIA suit for documents related to ‘Muslim ban’ implementation

April 17 -- The American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit Tuesday demanding information about President Donald Trump’s executive orders restricting immigration and travel from Muslim-majority nations. Continue...

Ramarley Graham’s family sues NYPD over Freedom of Information Act request

April 14 -- The family of Ramarley Graham, an unarmed teen killed by police in the Bronx, said on Wednesday they filed a lawsuit against the NYPD after the department didn’t comply with a Freedom of Information Act request. Continue...

Read more news on government transparency, open government and freedom of information. 

Want a reliable news feed on local and state government transparency, open government/data, and FOIA news and information? Subscribe to our news feed

Syndicate content

FOI Summit Wrap-up and All Things Summit

2016 FOI Summit from Washington, D.C.

The nation’s capital and the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Freedom of Information Act served as backdrops for the 2016 FOI Summit. The National Freedom of Information Coalition (NFOIC) and co-sponsor the D.C. Open Government Coalition (DCOGC) convened the summit on Friday and Saturday, October 7-8, 2016 at the Dupont Circle Hotel in downtown Washington, D.C. Continue>>>


Knight FOI Fund

About the Knight FOI Fund

The Knight FOI Fund offers financial support in open government lawsuits, fueling and assisting the pursuit of important FOI cases. The need arose from the realization that the economic crisis and the evolution of the news media has resulted in declining levels of FOI advocacy. Continue > >


About NFOIC

We are a nonpartisan alliance of state and regional affiliates promoting collaboration, education & advocacy for open government, transparency and freedom of information. We award grants, publish FOI and FOIA news, provide transparency education and support to state and local governments, supply state sample FOIA request letters and Federal FOIA request letters. Continue >>

Your NFOIC

About Your NFOIC

The National Freedom of Information Coalition (NFOIC) protects our right to open government. Our mission is to make sure state and local governments and public institutions have laws, policies and procedures to facilitate the public’s access to their records and proceedings.

Since 1989, NFOIC has worked to ensure open, accessible and transparent government. NFOIC is a nonpartisan alliance of 44 state & regional affiliates. Our members include citizen-driven nonprofit FOI organizations, academic and First Amendment centers, journalistic societies and attorneys.

NFOIC and its coalition members advocate to remove obstacles at public institutions that block or hinder people from obtaining information that is rightfully theirs. We are keenly aware of the challenges to access information in an increasingly digital world. Please review our 2017 priorities

NFOIC welcomes your involvement and financial support as a member or donor to help advance our mission. We encourage you to also support your NFOIC state affiliate. Opinions, comments, suggestions and questions are always welcome. Follow us on Twitter and “like” the cause of open government on Facebook. More about NFOIC...

Knight FOI Litigation Fund

Having your FOI request denied may leave no other option than pursuing legal action against the rejecting public agency or official. NFOIC offers financial support to litigate open government lawsuits through the Knight FOI Litigation Fund. Backed by a generous grant from the Knight Foundation, the fund helps to defray upfront costs such as filing fees, depositions, court costs and other expenses associated with legal actions. Applications may be submitted through your state FOI coalition or directly to NFOIC. 

2016 FOI Summit - Washington, D.C. 

The annual two-day FOI Summit convened in Washington, D.C. and featured presentations on policing transparency, open data, proactive disclosure, attorney fees, FOI litigation and advocacy campaigns. The continually growing challenge for government to manage, and for open records petitioners to obtain public information in an increasing digital age was a recurring theme throughout the summit. Learn more...

 

  File and track FOI requests at NFOIC state and regional coalition sites using FOIA Machine

The National Freedom of Information Coalition (NFOIC) and FOIA Machine (FM) have teamed to help people file and track their FOI requests online through select NFOIC state and regional member web sites. Visitors to  NFOIC coalition web sites will be able to use FOIA Machine's technology to prepare, file and track their FOI request to public agencies at the local, state, or federal levels. More...



Sign up for breaking news and notifications 

Occasionally, NFOIC emails notices related to state and local government transparency and FOI.  Please add your address if you'd like to be on our list.


Get Involved!

                                                     

 

All membership dues and donations
are tax-deductible.

NFOIC on:

Facebook Facebook & Twitter Twitter