ND attorney general opposes fine for open government violations

Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem said Monday he’s interested in finding ways to boost compliance with North Dakota’s open government laws, but a proposed $500 penalty against repeat violators isn’t the way to go.

Stenehjem testified before the House Judiciary Committee against House Bill 1435, which would impose a $500 penalty on a member of a state governing body who has violated the state’s open records and open meetings laws more than once.

Rep. Randy Boehning, R-Fargo, one of the bill’s four sponsors, said it was inspired by repeated violations by the State Board of Higher Education. Records compiled by the state Legislative Council show the board and the institutions it governs have violated open records and meetings laws 15 times since 2011. Continue>>>