D.C. Police Body Camera Update: A Year of Experience Shows None of the Problems Forecast In Mayor’s Push to Close Access

Since public access opened over a year ago, FOIA requests for video from Metropolitan Police body-worn cameras (BWC) have numbered just over sixty and redacting those released so far has cost only $25,000.

Those facts, released by the Open Government Coalition in a Sunshine Week briefing at the National Press Club, are far from the alarming estimates provided by the executive branch to the D.C. Council in the heat of the extended camera debate in 2015.


DCOGC: Independence of D.C. Watchdog Office Threatened, Coalition Tells D.C. Council

Plans are under way inside D.C. government to change the law in ways likely to disable the Office of Open Government (OOG). The D.C. Open Government Coalition testified February 23 at the annual performance oversight hearing on the Board of Ethics and Government Accountability (BEGA) that includes the OOG.

Proposals in the works at the board could harm the office, according to the Coalition’s government affairs committee chair, attorney Robert Becker. He reported on a text of a bill obtained by the Coalition and under consideration by D.C. officials.


Novel Lawsuit Headed for First Showdown-DCOOG Seeking Injunction and Penalties for Violations of Open Meetings Act

The District of Columbia, citing the "novelty" of this Open Meetings Act enforcement action, got more time over the holidays for the mayor's Caribbean Community Affairs Commission to figure out its next step in the case. The commission is one of the D.C. mayor's many public advisory bodies, and is alleged to have failed in fulfilling the law's requirements to inform the public in advance about meetings and to furnish a record of each meeting promptly afterwards.


D.C. Agencies’ FOIA Performance Slips in 2015; Problems Especially For Requesters Seeking Police Records – New Report

Analysis of the 2015 data on over 70 D.C. agencies’ responses to requests for public records under the D.C. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) shows troubling trends, according to a new report just released.

In handling about 6,200 new requests, compared to the prior year D.C. agencies granted fewer, rejected more, took longer doing so, and were more often wrong. Continue…




Coalition Testifies Seeking Stronger Oversight to Correct FOIA Failures at D.C. Dep’t of Consumer & Regulatory Affairs

A D.C. Council committee roundtable chaired by Vincent Orange (D-At Large) on July 13 listened to a crowded hearing room packed with residents angry about illegal construction and weak consumer protection by city regulators in the Department of Consumer & Regulatory Affairs (DCRA).


D.C. Coalition opposes bill to make ANCs more secretive

At a July 6 hearing of the D.C. Council Committee on Housing and Community Relations, the Coalition opposed a bill to exempt Advisory Neighborhood Commissions from the Freedom of Information Act. Board member LaVita Tuff testified that the bill would perpetuate ANCs' blanket exemption from the Open Meetings Act as well.


D.C. Transparency Watch: Appeal needed for NBC4 to get D.C. emails

Emails went missing the first time D.C. television reporters asked for agency staff communications that could shed light on weak preparations for a sudden snow storm on Jan. 20. And no one is saying why.

As the "News 4 I-Team" reported last week, their first request yielded a total of zero records — none. This of course seemed highly unlikely, as D.C. residents had been howling that night about city streets and roads that were untreated sheets of ice.