Public records

West Virginia high court hears open records case

Daniel Skallman | Freedom of Information | Feature | September 13, 2010
September 13, 2010

The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals heard oral arguments last Wednesday on whether to overturn a lower court ruling finding that petition signatures for a voter referendum are not public documents and, therefore, not subject to disclosure under the state’s freedom of information laws.

Minor league team ordered to disclose contract bids

Miranda Fleschert | Freedom of Information | Feature | July 27, 2010
July 27, 2010

A Pennsylvania appeals court ruled last week that a minor league baseball team's management group that contracts with a public stadium authority must disclose concessionaires' bids for contracts under the state's public records law.

Records request leads to dispute over request fees

Miranda Fleschert | Freedom of Information | Feature | June 18, 2010
June 18, 2010


When Wisconsin investigative reporter Richard Moore requested records from the state's Department of Natural Resources last year that related to a shoreland zoning issue, he did not expect to uncover a controversy about the agency’s handling of public records fees in general.

State university officials endorsed secrecy of Palin's speaking fee

Miranda Fleschert | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | May 12, 2010
May 12, 2010

E-mail messages made public this week by a state lawmaker show top California State University officials agreed to keep secret the speaking fee it intended to pay former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, California Watch reported.

The e-mail messages were released this week to Californians Aware, a First Amendment organization that has sued university's Stanislaus campus in order to gain access to its contract with Palin.

Prosecutors say former whistleblower protector deleted records

Miranda Fleschert | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | April 23, 2010
April 23, 2010

The former head of an office tasked with protecting government whistleblowers from retaliation will plead guilty to charges he tampered with public records by hiring a private technician to delete information off his computer while at the Office of Special Counsel.

West Virginia high court to hear case over petition signatures

Miranda Fleschert | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | January 19, 2010
January 19, 2010

West Virginia's high court agreed last week to hear a local newspaper’s freedom-of-information case over whether the names on a voter-referendum petition can be disclosed to the public, The (Martinsburg) Journal reported.

The Shepherdstown Observer has sued a county clerk who has refused the newspaper’s public records request for the names of people who signed a petition on a zoning referendum.

CREW files public records suit over SEC's post-Madoff reforms

Amanda Becker | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | January 7, 2010
January 7, 2010

The government accountability group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) has sued the Securities and Exchange Commission over its failure to provide documentation of reforms implemented in the wake of the largest investment fraud in the nation's history.

Coalition receives $2 million for new Freedom of Information fund

Amanda Becker | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | January 5, 2010
January 5, 2010

The National Freedom of Information Coalition has received a $2 million, three-year grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation to create the Knight FOIA Fund, which will fund the legal costs often associate with public records disputes.

Alabama newspaper askes for withheld 'personal' email

Amanda Becker | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | December 29, 2009
December 29, 2009

An Alabama newspaper is demanding copies of so-called personal e-mail messages sent by city officials that were withheld from a recent open-records request.

AP asks West Virginia court to reconsider judicial e-mail decision

Amanda Becker | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | December 16, 2009
December 16, 2009

The Associated Press has asked the West Virginia Supreme Court to reconsider its November ruling that e-mail messages exchanged between its former justice and a coal executive were not subject to public records laws, The Associated Press reported.