Which is better; public speculation or facts?

Forty-seven years ago the Arkansas Legislature passed one of the most comprehensive and strongest open-records and open meetings laws in the United States. In fact, when the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act passed in 1967, it cruised through both the House and the Senate without a single dissenting vote. Then Gov. Winthrop Rockefeller called the act’s passage “one of the most significant achievements of his administrations”.

More

Jayne: Shooting the breeze with Washington state’s attorney general

I should have been a lawyer. It's not that I have the smarts or the diligence. It's not that journalism isn't rewarding and challenging. It's just that, during my childhood, I couldn't count how many times my argumentative nature led somebody to suggest that I should become a lawyer. The irony is that my 11-year-old has inherited that nature – which is both a blessing and curse for his parents – and often is told the same thing. Something about the "sins of the father," I'm guessing.

More

R.I. AG says town violated public records access law

Rhode Island Attorney General Peter Kilmartin filed a lawsuit on Thursday against the town of Warren for allegedly violating the Rhode Island Access to Public Records Act (APRA).

Joelle Sylvia Esq., an attorney with the law firm Kelly & Mancini, made an APRA request on March 11 to the town of Warren seeking various documents. The town initially extended the time to respond to the request, but it allegedly failed to provide a response and/or the documents that were requested.

More

Georgia Attorney General Prevails In Lawsuit Defending Open Government

Judge Robert Adamson ruled in favor of Attorney General Sam Olens in a lawsuit filed in June 2012 against the City of Cumming and Mayor Henry Ford Gravitt for violations of the Open Meetings Act. Judge Adamson ordered the defendants to pay $12,000 in penalties, the highest amount possible under the law. Defendants have also been ordered to pay attorney's fees in an amount to be determined at a later hearing.

More

Rhode Island AG cites agencies for open meetings violations

Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin has sued two state agencies in R.I. Superior Court, asserting they violated open government regulations.

On Friday, Kilmartin filed separate complaints against the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation and the Rhode Island State Properties Committee. Kilmartin cites the DBR for a reckless violation of the Access to Public Records Act (APRA) when the agency failed to respond to a July 10, 2013, reporter’s request.

More

NY AG Schneiderman dodges open-records law

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has championed greater transparency for government and groups in his cross-hairs during his three-plus years as the state's top law enforcement official. But when it comes to his own dealings with a powerful political consultant and close adviser, Mr. Schneiderman is shielding them from public view—under legal reasoning some leading experts say is clearly wrong.

More

Kansas Attorney General proposes open government unit

The office of Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt is proposing a special two-person unit within his agency devoted solely to investigating Kansas Open Meetings Act and Kansas Open Records Act complaints.

The measure has the support of the Kansas Press Association. Doug Anstaett, the organization's executive director, told a legislative committee Tuesday that housing an open government unit within the attorney general's office would send a message that such complaints are a high priority.

More