D.C. Mayor, CTO to speak at open government summit

Mayor Muriel E. Bowser and Archana Vemulapalli, D.C.'s chief technology officer, will discuss government transparency and open data policy at the fifth annual Sunshine Week program co-hosted by the D.C. Open Government Coalition at the National Press Club March 15 from 6:30 to 9 p.m.

The event is open and free to all, but space is limited and only a few seats are still available. A reception will follow the program. 

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D.C. Council to vote on public access to police video

D.C. police may get the first green light for the proposed body camera program when the D.C. Council takes up compromise legislation allowing public access and lifting many but not all restrictions.

Calling it much improved from the total secrecy plans first proposed by D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser in April and the modified ban outlined in September, the D.C. Open Government Coalition on Monday wrote all Council members with praise for the leadership of Judiciary Committee chair Kenyan McDuffie and offering final recommendations.

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DC Court of Appeals warms to coalition arguments against novel “speech and debate” exemption for DC Council

Appearing as friend of the court, the D.C. Open Government Coalition last week argued that a new claim of exemption from the D.C. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) by the D.C. Council is fatally flawed. According to the Coalition, it misunderstands the law and opens a door for denials wider than available to any other agency covered by the D.C. open records law the Council has applied to itself for 15 years.

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Coalition urges Council to expand transparency of DC charter schools

DC Open Government Coalition Legal Committee co-chair Fritz Mulhauser testified Wednesday in favor of legislation that would require more openness in charter schools' business dealings, but stressed the need for broader action so that D.C. taxpayers can know how efficiently and effectively the private nonprofit schools are spending over $600 million dollars a year.

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Here’s what open-source government looks like

Seamus Kraft was running on minimal sleep through the days of furious Congressional debate surrounding the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), when he had his “aha!” moment. The digital director of communications for House Oversight and Government Reform chairman, Darrell Issa, was looking for a better way to get citizen input on a bill that had become a flashpoint across the internet community.

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DC body-cam access aired on Newseum TV

“Cameras, Cops and Accountability,” a Newseum TV event co-sponsored by the D.C. Open Government Coalition, featured a panel discussion on the legal and policy considerations regarding public access to police body camera footage.

Although the panel addressed body camera policy nationwide, the main focus was on access to body camera videos, legislation and proposed regulations in the District of Columbia. Continue…

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Police body camera debate heats up as mayor calls for $5.4M

On the streets of the nation’s capital, during a summer crimewave that has wrought more than 100 homicides, a police body camera “experiment” is taking place.

A contentious debate surrounding the city’s 2016 budget may dictate how this experimental program evolves, however — providing what could be seen as a rough model for implementation in other cities.  Continue…

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DC public meeting to discuss crime lasts almost 10 hours

There were a lot of sleepy eyes at the Wilson Building after some D.C. councilmembers stayed until the very end of a hearing on crime that started Wednesday night and lasted until 3 a.m Thursday.

Reducing violent crime and efficient emergency services are two things that city residents seem to be most concerned about these days. In the last 24 hours, both of those issues have been getting a lot of attention. Continue…

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