Frank Gibson: Tennessee 'sunshine' dimmed by one watchdog's assessment

Submitted by LDieringer on Tue, 08/27/2013 - 11:36am

Opinion from Frank Gibson via The Leaf Chronicle:  It will not come as news to anyone that Tennessee’s public meetings and open records laws fall in the lower ranks when compared to the open government laws of the other 49 states.

Now a new study by the Better Government Association that claims Tennessee’s separate government conflict of interest and whistleblower protection laws rank higher than our “sunshine” and public records (Freedom of Information) statutes.

BGA, a Chicago-based government watchdog group, just released its Integrity Index, comparing those four vital government transparency laws in all 50 states.

[. . .]

To create the Index, the BGA measured state laws against “best practices” for the four types of statutes.

“The majority of states are failing miserably when it comes to enacting laws that enable regular citizens to fight corruption by attending public meetings, reviewing government documents and raising questions without fear of retribution,” the BGA reported.To create the Index, the BGA measured state laws against “best practices” for the four types of statutes.

Continue . . .

Frank Gibson is TPA’s public policy director [and a member of NFOIC's board of directors]. He can be reached at 615-202-2685 or at fgibson@tnpress.com.

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