Mass. Reading puts all records into online cloud

From The Boston Globe:

As state lawmakers consider creating a municipal record preservation commission to help ensure that essential public records are protected, the sleepy suburb of Reading is emerging as a role model for small towns statewide, replacing stacks of manila folders and dusty filing cabinets with digital software.


NFOIC’s State FOIA Friday for May 18, 2012

A few state FOIA and local open government news items selected from many of interest that we might or might not have drawn attention to earlier in the week:

Open meeting law needs looser definition

MASSACHUSETTS—At the risk of sounding like a geezer, I want to tell you a little about what it was like reporting on local government before there was such a thing as an open meeting law.


Lunenburg clerk: No violation of Open Meeting Law


Lunenburg Town Clerk Kathryn Herrick said Wednesday afternoon that all meetings for this week were posted by last Thursday night, and does not feel a violation of the state's Open Meeting Law was committed.

"I put all of the meetings up myself. I remember because I had someone stand there with me to hold up the glass," Herrick said Wednesday afternoon.


Massachusetts resident files open meetings complaint

From The Herald News:

The Diman School Committee addressed an open meetings complaint filed by a Swansea resident during its session Thursday.

The complaint was filed by Patrick Higgins, a candidate for the Swansea Recreation Commission. It stated that the School Committee’s agendas did not include enough detail.


So much for open government

From Concord Monitor:

In a column published in the Monitor yesterday, House Speaker Bill O'Brien and others argued that the vote to override the governor's veto of the House redistricting plan was conducted properly. He described the failure to publish the governor's veto message in the House Journal prior to the vote as a red herring and justified his tactical strategy of calling for a vote without notice to the public on the grounds of expediency.


The Patrick Administration’s Guide to the Public Records Law

From Boston Magazine

Hot on the heels of “Sunshine Week,” when MassPIRG celebrated the Patrick Administration’s commitment to transparency, we thought we’d collect some best practices in transparency we’ve learned over the years from the Administration.