Sunshine Week isn’t just for the media

Opinion from Zanesville Times Recorder:

Welcome to Sunshine Week — a time created to draw public attention to the issue of freedom of information. The first Sunshine Sunday was declared in Florida in 2002, when newspapers across that state agreed to publish editorials and articles on government openness on the same day. It was the Sunday before James Madison’s birthday.

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Shadows lengthen on access to public records

Editorial from Dennis Hetzel, executive director of the Ohio Newspaper Association:

Every year, Sunshine Week underscores the importance of open government across the nation. It is a perfect moment to share concerns in Ohio about ever-growing exceptions to an open records law that should ensure you have access to information about what your government officials do and how well they do it.

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NFOIC’s State FOIA Friday for November 9, 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:

image of Access

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Fulton County commended for data availability

From toledoBlade.com:

WAUSEON — Sunshine Review, a national nonprofit group that aims to encourage state and local government transparency, has given Fulton County an A+.

The county previously scored a ‘C’ in that area and even was found to have violated Ohio’s Sunshine Law, written to ensure citizens know when officials plan to hold meetings and make decisions.

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FTC keeps funeral rule lapses buried: plain dealing

From Cleveland.com:

The Federal Trade Commission knows what its undercover investigators found in sweeps of Cleveland-area funeral homes conducted last year. But you, as a member of the public, aren’t allowed to know – even though the Funeral Rule was created to protect you.

The agency recently denied a Freedom of Information Act appeal for more information about the sweeps and the violations.

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