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…


US Open Public Records Laws in Desperate Need for Unity

Diversity is a terrible thing. Before dashing off an email criticizing me, I’m not talking diversity of race, gender or ethnicity, which I wholeheartedly support. I’m talking about diversity among public records laws. Consider these national disparities in public records requests. A Pennsylvania citizen requests a criminal investigative record under its state’s Right to Know…


Pennsylvania open government expert discusses transparency, confidentiality

Back when Terry Mutchler was spending late nights at The Daily Collegian or rushing across campus to make an 8 a.m. class, she never imagined she would someday return to speak at Penn State.

On Wednesday, the 1993 graduate, an expert in open government and freedom of information matters, returned to do just that.

Mutchler leads the transparency practice at Philadelphia’s Pepper Hamilton law firm. The firm is at the center of document issues in multiple lawsuits related to the Jerry Sandusky case.