The Delaware Coalition for Open Government is urging members of the Delaware State Senate to vote no on Senate Bill 155. The bill would amend the Freedom of Information Act to allow for new legal fees, new scanning fees, new broad FOIA exemptions, new prohibitions on monetary compensation and a new shorter timeframe for the public to seek court relief.
These new legal exemptions for FOIA requests will make Delaware one of the most restrictive states (if not the most restrictive) to request public information.”
“The new legal review fees in Senate Bill 155 will make Delaware one of the most costly states (if not the most costly) to request public information by ordinary citizens and news media,” according to a press release from the Delaware Coalition. “It would charge the public requestors the entire cost for redactions, as the only cost exempted is for the very narrow set of costs associated with “issues of law”, which does not apply at all to how the law is applied to particular documents.
“These administrative costs would also be in addition to the new fees allowed for scanning. SB 155 revises (FOIA) to address how public bodies may respond to FOIA requests that they label as unreasonable, disruptive, or abusive,” the press release continues. “The supporters of SB 155 have not provided any Delaware examples of FOIA requests that were fulfilled under the current law but would have been denied under the proposed language. These new legal exemptions for FOIA requests will make Delaware one of the most restrictive states (if not the most restrictive) to request public information.”
For more information, contact Kowalko at (302) 528-9464.