Deadline is extended to May 20 for NFOIC’s fourth annual FOI Research Competition

David Cuillier, Ph.D.NFOIC Board President The National Freedom of Information Coalition’s fourth annual FOI research competition deadline for proposals will be extended two weeks, until May 20, to account for the continuing demands from the pandemic and other distractions. Winning papers in the competition earn cash awards, and authors of all accepted papers receive free registration to…

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Study finds more tax-subsidy transparency, but still ‘room for improvement’

Public disclosure of tax subsidy programs is improving generally, but more than a third of state economic development agencies still keep deals secret as they lure big business. That’s according to an April 2022 study by Good Jobs First, which reported that 62% of agencies that administer business incentives disclose reasonable information about companies receiving…

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As he tries to save lives of those in recovery, Virginia advocate is denied the state data he needs

By Lila GreenbergStudent research assistantBrechner Center for Freedom of Information at the University of Florida  Michael McDermott is locked in a legal battle with the state of Virginia in his quest to publish overdose response incidents and shed light on the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of state programs battling drug addiction.  His efforts, he says, will…

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New Jersey township backtracks, drops lawsuit against woman, 82, for filing records requests

A New Jersey municipality that had sued an 82-year-old woman for seeking a “burdensome” number of public records has dropped its lawsuit, after a wave of media attention and backlash. Irvington Township in 2021 sued Elouise McDaniel for filing numerous requests under the state’s Open Public Records Act. “They were trying to intimidate Ms. McDaniel,”…

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NFOIC begins transfer of admin duties to Virginia coalition, renews focus on members

The following note was sent March 24, 2022, to members of the National Freedom of Information Coalition. Dear coalition leaders and members:  We write today with an update regarding the future operations of the National Freedom of Information Coalition, as it transitions from a university-supported organization funded by one or two large grants, to a…

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Access to police-camera footage must improve, open-government advocates say

Government emails, metadata also top list of FOI-tech issues that leave us in the dark FOR RELEASE: March 14, 2022 Contact: Todd Fettig, NFOIC executive director  Phone: 352-294-7082   Email: nfoic@nfoic.org March 14, 2022 — The public too often is being denied access to police body- and dash-cam footage. This ranks as the most critical…

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After police shot and killed her son, mother uses open records laws to find answers, spark change

From “A mother’s quest for openness provides map for spurring change,” published March 1, 2022 in The Journal: A Civic Issues Magazine. “When Sheila Albers, of Kansas, couldn’t get answers to the questions she had after her 17-year-old son was shot and killed by an Overland Park police officer while the teen was in the…

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Helped by NFOIC and Knight FOI Fund, Colorado media entity sues for county records

With support from the National Freedom of Information Coalition’s Knight FOI Fund and members of the community, Delta County Citizen Report (DCCR), a nonprofit media organization, filed a lawsuit Feb. 8, 2022, against Delta County and Delta County Administration citing four violations of the Colorado Open Records Act (CORA). JoAnn Kalenak, President of DCCR, said…

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Fourth annual NFOIC competition invites research proposals focused on FOI, technology

The fourth annual National Freedom of Information Coalition research competition welcomes one-page proposals for papers that shed light on freedom of information, particularly those focusing on technology and FOI. Top-three papers will earn cash prizes and will be guaranteed publication in the online Journal of Civic Information, published by the University of Florida’s Brechner Center…

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