Minnesota: News organizations ask judge to open MSOP hearing on Monday

Arguing that citizens shouldn’t be locked out of a court hearing that could produce reforms to Minnesota’s troubled sex-offender treatment program, the Star Tribune, New York Times and 13 other news and open-government organizations have asked a federal judge to reverse himself and allow the public to attend the Aug. 10 conference.

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2015 session in Minnesota shows importance of transparency

The past few weeks of Minnesota's 2015 legislative session aredisproving that old saying about legislation — much like sausage, you don't want to see how it's made.

The more Central Minnesotans learn about last-minute legislative offers, rejections and stealthily silent changes to legislation, the more they should watch and push lawmakers to change how they do the public's business.  Continue>>>

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Seven months and counting: A FOIA lament

Today marks the seven-month anniversary of my oldest outstanding public records request, so please indulge me in some ventilation. Back on April 14, before the snow of last winter melted, I made a Freedom of Information Act request to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Today, snow once more whitens the ground, and I'm still waiting.

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My mystifying journey into the world of FOIA (part 2)

Last week, I invited readers along on my journey through the Freedom of Information Act via one record request filed May 20. I asked the Department of the Army for records of a government contractor who had been blacklisted in April for some kind of violation. The story so far: Aside from a letter acknowledging my request, I have received zip.

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Editorial: MN Governor’s signature on Timberjay bill is a victory for access to government

Senate File 1770 had already received unanimous support in the House and the Senate. Known as the Timberjay bill, it would require that all government contracts with private business be subject to the Minnesota Data Practices Act, even if that open access is not specifically identified in the contract.

Last week Gov. Mark Dayton signed that bill, demonstrating that he understands and agrees with the public’s right to open access to government data.

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