Op-ed: Fine tune, but don’t overhaul Washington state’s Public Records Act

As the voters said when adopting the Public Records Act in 1972: “The people of this state do not yield their sovereignty to the agencies that serve them.”

The people use public records to learn what their government is up to, so they can maintain control.

But under an evolving proposal in the state House of Representatives, records requests that are now answered promptly could languish at the bottom of a pile, and much of what government does could be hidden behind a wall of bureaucracy.

The latest available version of SSHB 2576 would strip the Public Records Act of its core provision that all records requests must be handled with the same promptness regardless of who makes them or why. Continue…