With looming deadlines threatening to kill a slew of proposals aimed at bolstering access to public records in Texas, a state senator on Thursday muscled them closer to Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk — all at once.
Sen. Kirk Watson’s maneuver came as senators took up an open records bill that had already cleared the House: Watson and Rep. Eddie Lucio’s House Bill 2328, which would give government entities — with employees trained in open records law — an option to expedite information requests under Texas public records law.
Read More… from Texas Senate unsticks proposals to plug public records “loopholes”
Education is a $1.1 trillion industry in America, one requiring vigilant public oversight – oversight that increasingly is frustrated when answers to simple questions are concealed behind an impenetrable wall of “student privacy.”
Ask a public university or a school district anything about any issue of public importance – sexual harassment by employees, crime on campus, athlete recruiting scandals – and you can expect to hear: “We can’t tell you anything because of FERPA.” Even when they know it’s not true.
Read More… from Va. Coalition for Open Government: Education privacy law used as excuse to used to conceal records
A bill making it easier for Tennesseans to make public records requests passed an important hurdle Wednesday on its way to becoming law.
The House State Government Subcommittee recommended passage of a bill sponsored by Rep. Courtney Rogers, R-Goodlettsville, that would require records custodians that accept requests "in writing, to accept a handwritten request submitted in person or by mail, an email request, or a request on an electronic form submitted online."
Read More… from TN: Bill easing open records requests passes House committee
Frustrated at being stonewalled on getting records on the activities of Troy’s city manager, a city resident has filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the city. Ann Erickson Gault wants disclosure of public documents she requested regarding City Manager Brian Kischnick. The lawsuit, which was assigned to Oakland Circuit Judge Nanci Grant, not only seeks the requested documents about his city-owned vehicle and other matters but also the awarding of to-be-determined damages, including attorney fees, for allegedly violating the state’s open records law.
Read More… from Troy (MI) resident seeks records after city manager scrutiny
The McCrory administration has lost a round in its court fight against news organizations that contend the state has systematically defied its own public records law.
That law requires that most government records be made available to the public as “promptly as possible.”
Read More… from News groups win round in North Carolina public records fight
Public records fights take too much time and cost too much money, a slew of Republican leaders said Wednesday.
Senate President Keith Faber, R-Celina, wants to create a first-of-its-kind way to appeal rejected requests for public records by going through the Ohio Court of Claims.
Read More… from Ohio could make public records fights cheaper, quicker
During Sunshine Week in March when attention nationwide was focused on government transparency, Gov. Scott Walker issued an executive order calling on state agencies to "go above and beyond requirements of the Public Records Law and promote easier, fairer and broader access to public records."
The director of state courts hasn't gotten the message.
Read More… from Editorial: Stall tactic on records release in Wisconsin must end
The log of public records requests that Vermont law requires the administration to keep up to date went more than a year without updating.
As of Tuesday morning, the Department of Information and Innovation had not updated a log of requests made under the Vermont Public Records Act since March 2015. Additionally, it appears the Shumlin administration never sent an annual report detailing such requests that was due Jan. 15.
Read More… from Vermont falls behind on disclosure of public records requests
The Ohio Supreme Court is deciding whether police departments can shield the complete files of a long-closed criminal case until all chance of appeals are exhausted, usually because the defendant is dead.
A public records lawsuit contends that the position taken by the Columbus Police Department and backed by the local prosecutor is part of a trend around the state of agencies refusing to release such records.
Read More… from Ohio Supreme Court to weigh in on public records debate
Across the state, law enforcement agencies are adding body cameras to their arsenal of tools.
While generally supported by both department heads and city leaders, the move is sparking a new debate over who gets to watch the video.
Read More… from Louisiana lawmakers consider bill exempting body cam video from public record