Promising role awaits new Public Information Board in Iowa

Opinion from Des Moines Register:

Iowa’s courts have been busy lately with lawsuits and appeals involving access to public documents and meetings. There was, for example, a trial court battle in Des Moines over access to the former school superintendent’s email messages, and in recent weeks the Iowa Supreme Court has issued rulings involving University of Iowa student records, Atlantic school disciplinary files and Iowa Film Office tax credit reports.
Government officials, citizens and news organizations have long agreed there should be a better way to resolve disputes over public access to government information and decision-making.
Toward that end, a historic meeting was held in the state Capitol on July 19. It was the first meeting of the new Iowa Public Information Board, which will give Iowa citizens and state and local government officials a place to get questions answered and complaints resolved regarding public access to government meetings and records.