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Monday, March 14, 2016

Ind. Gov't. - "Sunshine Week celebrates the right to know: A constant vigil"

That is the heading to this good editorial today in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette. It details three examples of current right to know issues: release of police dash-cam and body-cam videos; whether police agencies at private universities should have to make their actions public as other law enforcement agencies do; and whether legislators should be above the law:

The open-records law doesn’t apply to the legislature. Making them public might embarrass someone.

They might. But why should legislators be above the law?

The Indiana House maintains its emails, unlike communications by other government officials, are not subject to the open-records law. Last year, after Rep. Eric Koch, R-Bedford, introduced an anti-solar power bill that tilted heavily toward the electric-power industry, a coalition of consumer groups sued for copies of any emails between Koch, who chairs the House Utilities, Energy and Telecommunications Committee, and utility lobbyists. Rather than let any such exchanges see the light of day, the House hired private attorneys to fight the matter to the Indiana Supreme Court.

Thursday, paid by your tax money, those attorneys will argue before the Supreme Court that you don’t have the right to know what may have gone on between Koch and the lobbyists, or what goes on between any legislator and any representative of any group seeking special favors.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on March 14, 2016 11:03 AM
Posted to Indiana Government