National Freedom of Information Coalition
Protecting Your Right to Open Government

Wisconsin board backs away from open records rule changes

Wisconsin officials backed away Thursday from a move to cut back on record-keeping requirements amid a backlash by open government advocates.

The board that oversees state public records will instead revisit its August vote changing the definition of so-called transitory records, such as texts and other messages deemed to have only temporary value. Gov. Scott Walker's administration has used the changes to deny requests for text messages and records of visits to the governor's mansion.

The Public Records Board's chairman, Matthew Blessing, made the announcement just three days after the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council filed a complaint with the Dane County district attorney alleging the board had violated the state's open meetings law during its Aug. 24 meeting when it approved the changes, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. Continue…