Osage News v. Department of the Treasury, Osage Nation Executive Branch
Case Number: CV-2022-0005
Court: Osage Nation Trial Court
Client: Osage News
Claim of Record Access Filed: March 30, 2022
Background: In January 2022, Osage News reporter Louise Red Corn filed a public records request with the Treasury Department of the Osage Nation Executive Branch under the Nation’s Open Records Act. The reporter sought all payments the Treasury Department made to the Tulsa, Oklahoma-based law firm Barrow & Grimm dating back to September 2021.
The attorney general of the Osage Nation denied Red Corn’s request, claiming the payment records are exempt under a confidentiality provision of the Nation’s public records law because they “relate to a contract with a law firm for a specific civil litigation matter, which is ongoing.”
On behalf of Osage News, Kathryn E. Gardner, the Reporters Committee’s Local Legal Initiative attorney in Oklahoma, filed a claim of records access in the trial court of the Osage Nation. The claim asks the court to issue an order compelling the Nation’s Treasury Department to release the requested records.
Update: After Osage Nation officials turned over the requested records, Osage News agreed to dismiss the lawsuit. A judge granted the motion to dismiss on May 24, 2022.
2022-03-30: Claim of records access
2022-05-24: Order granting motion to dismiss