Hawaii’s public records: High fees are keeping public information secret

From Huffington Post: Neil Abercrombie’s job as Hawaii governor takes him around the world.

Tourism meetings in Tokyo. A trade show in Los Angeles. A forum in Beijing.

Those kinds of trips sound pricey. But independently reviewing the travel expenses to see if they are worth taxpayers’ money is definitely cost-prohibitive.


One way to keep tabs on the public’s money is to review the governor’s travel records. That’s pretty standard procedure for journalists in most states, especially when an incumbent is up for reelection.

But it’s tough to do in Hawaii. The cost of public records effectively invalidates the state public records law in many instances. It’s just too expensive for the public to pay the price the agencies charge to review records that are legally available under the Uniform Information Practices Act, Hawaii’s decades-old public records law.

Visit Huffington Post for more. In addition, please read Honolulu Civil Beat’s special report on the cost of Hawaii’s public records here.