Through public records lawsuits, RCFP’s Local Legal Initiative seeks to improve Pennsylvania’s Right to Know Law

Attorneys for the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press are currently fighting in court to help Pennsylvania journalists gain access to records that should be released under the state’s Right to Know Law. If they’re successful, reporters from local news organizations will be able to access records that reveal a forensic audit of a…


After 4 months York County (PA) won’t release public information; other counties did so in days

The York Dispatch is in a legal battle with York County for information that Pennsylvania’s Office of Open Records has stated is clearly a public record. The newspaper first requested basic information about prothonotary office employees — including names, pay rates, job titles and dates of hire — in late July. The York Dispatch sought the information from York County officials and…


PA governor allows government transparency legislation to become law

Despite opposing a bill he rebuked as “foolish” and “thoughtless,” Governor Tom Wolf let House Bill 2463 become law without his signature on Sunday. The bill passed unanimously in the state house and senate earlier this month. The bill would require state agencies to respond to RTK requests with procedures established by the Office of…


Office of Open Records issues decision in redacted information in sewer-sale legal bills

The state Office of Open Records determined the Scranton Sewer Authority redacted too much information in legal bills regarding the Scranton sewer system sale and ordered the release of more specifics to The Times-Tribune. In a decision issued Wednesday, the OOR also upheld some of the authority’s redactions under an attorney-client exemption from public disclosure….


PA: Public wants police complaint records, videos

With the public demanding greater access to police documents and videos, two cases in the Lehigh Valley area could help shape legal precedent about what records must be released.

A Northampton County judge will decide whether the public is entitled to see complaints filed by citizens against a police officer. That case stems from a Bethlehem resident's request for complaint and disciplinary records about a Bethlehem officer.


Editorial: East Earl Township (PA) supervisors need to step out from behind closed doors and embrace open government

When it comes to open and transparent government aimed at serving the people, East Earl Township supervisors must not have gotten the memo.

Supervisors Earl Kreider, Joe Shriver and David Zimmerman have been running the government based on the idea that the less the citizens know about what is going on, the better. They have been good, in fact far too good, at operating behind closed doors.


NFOIC’s State FOIA Friday for November 8, 2013

From NFOIC:  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. While you're at it, be sure to check out State FOIA Friday Archives.

Brevard corruption case morphs into public records battle