Editorial: MN Governor’s signature on Timberjay bill is a victory for access to government

Senate File 1770 had already received unanimous support in the House and the Senate. Known as the Timberjay bill, it would require that all government contracts with private business be subject to the Minnesota Data Practices Act, even if that open access is not specifically identified in the contract.

Last week Gov. Mark Dayton signed that bill, demonstrating that he understands and agrees with the public’s right to open access to government data.

Dayton did veto a portion of the bill that would fund a study by the Office of the Legislative Auditor to learn how secure state systems are at protecting and transmitting data. He said it’s not fiscally responsible to appropriate an ongoing amount of money without articulating the cost to perform the new duties outlined in the law. Also excluded from the notice requirement until June 30, 2015, are health plan companies, managed care organizations and county-based purchasing plans. Continue>>>