County denies release of controller emails

From Citizens’ Voice:  Luzerne County can conceal Controller Walter L. Griffith Jr.’s emails because of his arrest on felony electronic-surveillance charges and the lawsuit alleging he violated the state’s wiretap law, the county claimed in denials to open-records requests.

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Editorial: A sorry effort to censor Pa.’s open-records czar

From Philly.com:  Some Pennsylvania lawmakers are trying to prohibit the executive director of the state Office of Open Records from speaking publicly about active cases – essentially gagging an office designed to promote open government.

A bill being considered in Harrisburg would undermine crucial provisions of the state’s open-records law and have a chilling effect on transparency.

 

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NFOIC’s State FOIA Friday for December 21, 2012

State FOIA Friday News 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:

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Luzerne County has yet to comply with open-records request for emails

From The Citizen’s Voice:

Luzerne County has acknowledged possessing thousands of emails excluded from an open-records release because of an assumption the emails were deleted.

The emails were from Leonard Piazza, the ousted director of elections fired April 11. The county has resisted access to Piazza’s emails since The Citizens’ Voice filed an April 12 request for Piazza’s emails dating back to Nov. 1, 2010.

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Pa. SC: Records for private companies can be public

From Legal Newsline

HARRISBURG, Pa. (Legal Newsline) – The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled that private companies — more specifically, those operating for "public benefit" — can be required to make their records public under the state's Right-to-Know Law.

In particular, the disclosure of any written concessionaire bids is required under the recently revamped law, the Court said in its May 29 ruling.

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Court rules Pa. records requests need not be perfect

From The Beaver County Times

Public-records requests filed under Pennsylvania's Right to Know Law need not cite the law or satisfy other technicalities so long as they include the requester's name and address and enough information for government agencies to identify the records being sought, an appellate court panel ruled Monday.

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