Ohio State auditors issue 321 citations for 2017 public records violations

COLUMBUS — State auditors issued 321 public records-related citations to 267 public entities in calendar year 2017 – a 22 percent drop in citations from the prior year.

Ohio Auditor of State Dave Yost made the announcement as part of Sunshine Week, a nationwide initiative designed to raise awareness of the importance of open government and public records. Sunshine Week ran from March 11 to 17 and occurs every mid-March, coinciding with the National Freedom of Information Day on March 16.

In all, about 5.5 percent of the 4,803 financial audits issued in 2017 included citations for non-compliance with public records-related requirements. The prior year, 8 percent of the 4,446 audits released included noncompliance citations.

The majority of citations stemmed from officials neglecting to attend state-required public records trainings, entities lacking public records policies or a failure to make the policy readily available to employees and the general public. Auditors routinely review public record practices during audits. Read more…