Supreme Court hears public records case re: states denying non-citizens access

From Mondaq:

On February 20, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral argument in McBurney v. Young, No. 12-17, a case with potentially major implications for businesses that use state freedom of information acts (FOIAs) to obtain competitive intelligence, as well as data sellers and aggregators, and media outlets. The case arises from the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, which affirmed the Eastern District of Virginia's grant of summary judgment upholding the constitutionality of a restriction in the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (VFOIA) that permits only citizens of Virginia to submit requests for public records under that statute. The petitioners claim that the citizens-only restriction violates the Privileges and Immunities Clause of the U.S. Constitution, as well as the dormant Commerce Clause. While all 50 states have FOIAs, only a few, including Tennessee and Arkansas, continue to enforce "citizens-only" limitations like Virginia's. Upholding that restriction could spur other states seeking to reduce the volume of FOIA requests to enact similar restrictions, creating additional protections for confidential information of businesses in the hands of state and local governments.
The decision in McBurney will most immediately affect businesses, such as data sellers, whose business model depends on ready and inexpensive access to public records in all 50 states. But businesses in all manner of industries whose trade secrets and other confidential information is in the hands of state and local governments could find themselves with an additional protection to guard that information from harmful disclosure by an affirmance that could spur other states to enact similar citizens-only restrictions to their FOIAs.

Also see this from the HuffingtonPost.

For more background, see NFOIC's joining in an amicus brief regarding this case.