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  • CMS Denies ACA Computer Security FOIA Request

    The FOIA blog
    scott hodes
    19 Aug 2014 | 6:34 am
    Federal News Radio reports on the CMS denying an Associated Press Reporter's FOIA request for records pertaining to documents about the kinds of security software and computer systems behind the federally funded HealthCare.gov.  The agency denied the records using a novel claim that release of the records because doing so could leave the site vulnerable to hackers thus causing an unwarranted risk to consumer's private information. Less than five years ago, this request would simply have been denied pursuant to FOIA Exemption 2.  However, the Supreme Court limited the…
  • ACLU defends right to protest amid Ferguson turmoil

    FIRST AMENDMENT COALITION » News & Opinion
    donal brown
    19 Aug 2014 | 10:34 am
    The American Civil Liberties Union took Missouri agencies to court in protest of their stipulation that anyone standing for more than five seconds on sidewalks in Ferguson would be subject to arrest. The ACLU is suing St. Louis County and the Highway Patrol claiming that the arrest of law-abiding individuals for simply standing still for […]
  • Judge denies CNN request for Bergdahl documents

    IDOG
    IDOG
    30 Jul 2014 | 10:33 am
    Judge Robert J. Elgee issued a ruling on Tuesday denying a Cable News Network request for a 15-year-old Blaine County police report involving the Bowe Bergdahl family. From the Idaho Mountain Express
  • Primary Threat in Alaska has GOP Establishment Shuddering

    OpenSecrets Blog
    Lalita Clozel
    18 Aug 2014 | 12:00 pm
    In Alaska’s Senate primary race, the Republican establishment has downplayed threats to its top candidate, Dan Sullivan. Yet his challengers, Joe Miller and Mead Treadwell, have triggered a frenzy of last-minute spending to ensure Sullivan wins the Tuesday election. Dan Sullivan, the frontrunner in the Senate Republican primary in Alaska, is facing stiff competition from opponents Joe Miller and Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell. (Facebook.com) As of late July, Sullivan had about $4.1 million in the bank — over three times more than Treadwell, the lieutenant governor, who had banked $1.2…
  • Today in #OpenGov 8/20/2014

    Sunlight Foundation Blog
    Matt Rumsey
    20 Aug 2014 | 7:36 am
    Keep reading for today's look at #OpenGov news, events, and analysis, including plenty of new data, changes in Ferguson, and trouble for Andrew Cuomo. National News Cause of Action, a group that pursue's government transparency through legal action, is moving against a dozen federal agencies that have pushed back against its document requests. Cause of Action is accusing the Obama Administration of politicizing the requests to avoid sharing information. (Government Executive) New data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows the ebb and flow of wetlands and forests along…
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    The FOIA blog

  • CMS Denies ACA Computer Security FOIA Request

    scott hodes
    19 Aug 2014 | 6:34 am
    Federal News Radio reports on the CMS denying an Associated Press Reporter's FOIA request for records pertaining to documents about the kinds of security software and computer systems behind the federally funded HealthCare.gov.  The agency denied the records using a novel claim that release of the records because doing so could leave the site vulnerable to hackers thus causing an unwarranted risk to consumer's private information. Less than five years ago, this request would simply have been denied pursuant to FOIA Exemption 2.  However, the Supreme Court limited the…
  • FOIA Legislation Discussion on C-SPAN

    scott hodes
    12 Aug 2014 | 12:49 pm
    Danielle Brian, the Executive Director of Project on Government Oversight was recently on C-SPAN and discussed the pending FOIA legislation.  Video can be seen here.
  • FDA Loses FACA Case

    scott hodes
    5 Aug 2014 | 7:08 am
    Judge Richard Leon of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia has remanded a case back to the FDA so that it can reconstitute the makeup of the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee.  The Court found that the inital make up of the committee was improper and barred its initial "Menthol Report" which dealt with menthol in tobacco products.   I highlight this case because it is one of a very small number of Federal Advisory Committee Act cases that has occurred over the past years.  In this case, the tobacco…
  • Senate FOIA Legislation: Going Nowhere Fast

    scott hodes
    31 Jul 2014 | 5:24 am
    In June, S. 2520 the FOIA Improvement Act was introduced into the Senate by Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT), John Cornyn (R-TX) and Edward Markey (D-MA).  Since then, according to OpenCongress.org, nothing has happened. Congress goes out for the Summer after this week and is not back into session until September 8.  For the bill to become law, it will need to go to the Judiciary Committee, reported and voted on by the floor and then go to conference with a similar but different House FOIA bill.  Frankly, time may be running our a 2014 FOIA bill.
  • Reporter's FOIA Journey Continues

    scott hodes
    28 Jul 2014 | 6:24 am
    Last week, I spotlighted a reporter's inital foray into the FOIA.  He has updated his attempt to get records from the Army which he is finding increasingly frustrating. I sympathize with his frustration; the FOIA is much harder than it should be because, as the reporter has found out, real life gets in the way.  The Army employee in charge of getting his records is detailed to another duty- the FOIA liasion's phone was transferred to someone unfamiliar with the FOIA.  The roadblocks go on and on. This is why FOIA professionals both inside and outside the government…
 
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    FIRST AMENDMENT COALITION » News & Opinion

  • ACLU defends right to protest amid Ferguson turmoil

    donal brown
    19 Aug 2014 | 10:34 am
    The American Civil Liberties Union took Missouri agencies to court in protest of their stipulation that anyone standing for more than five seconds on sidewalks in Ferguson would be subject to arrest. The ACLU is suing St. Louis County and the Highway Patrol claiming that the arrest of law-abiding individuals for simply standing still for […]
  • Transparency: Los Angeles police err in reporting violent crimes

    donal brown
    18 Aug 2014 | 10:03 am
    The Los Angeles Times found that the Los Angeles Police Department regularly misclassified violent crimes as less serious offenses during a one year term ending September of 2013. Downgrading the seriousness of the crimes pumps up the department’s performance. The police are under pressure to reduce crime. (Los Angeles Times, August 9, 2014, by Ben […]
  • Federal judge tells Philadelphia to stop censoring airport ad

    donal brown
    14 Aug 2014 | 12:50 pm
    A federal district judge ruled that Philadelphia had failed to justify their rejection of a ad to run at the airport by the National Association of Colored People (NAACP) on the disparity between spending on education and prisons. The airport ran the ad briefly then adopted a policy against political or noncommercial ads. The judge […]
  • Federal judge maintains clamp on secret court transcripts on spying

    donal brown
    14 Aug 2014 | 11:58 am
    A federal district judge ruled that the government did not have to release more records of its spying program including rulings by the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and the names of cooperating telecom companies. Edward Snowden revealed the existence of the court and details of the spying on domestic phone calls that may be […]
  • Reporters arrested while covering protests in Missouri

    donal brown
    14 Aug 2014 | 10:31 am
    Police arrested two reporters, later released, from the Huffington Post and The Washington Post after a confrontation in McDonalds during the protest over the shooting of Michael Brown, an unarmed young black man in Ferguson, Kansas. The reporters were recharging cell phones and accessing WiFi and prompted the arrests by video recording the police during […]
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    IDOG

  • Judge denies CNN request for Bergdahl documents

    IDOG
    30 Jul 2014 | 10:33 am
    Judge Robert J. Elgee issued a ruling on Tuesday denying a Cable News Network request for a 15-year-old Blaine County police report involving the Bowe Bergdahl family. From the Idaho Mountain Express
  • Senator suggests secret review by lawmakers before releasing OPE reports

    IDOG
    28 Jul 2014 | 6:05 pm
    Sen. Dean Mortimer, R-Idaho Falls, has been pushing to let lawmakers review reports from the Legislature’s Office of Performance Evaluations in closed meetings and suggest changes before they’re released publicly, the AP reports. The OPE conducts detailed and often controversial investigations into how state agencies operate and points to savings, efficiencies or improvements; its director, Rakesh Mohan, staunchly opposes any such change in the rules because it would alter the office’s independence and credibility. From AP/Eye on Boise
  • CNN argues for access to Bergdahl police report

    IDOG
    23 Jul 2014 | 8:57 am
    Judge Robert J. Elgee will review a 15-year-old police report involving the Bowe Bergdahl family before making a decision if the report should be released to Cable News Network. From the Idaho Mountain Express
  • Records from St. Luke’s antitrust trial to be revealed

    IDOG
    8 Jul 2014 | 11:10 am
    Almost 900: That's how many witness statements, internal emails, hospital prices and other documents U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill pored over in the past couple of months, sorting out what should be kept secret from what the law requires him to make public. From the Idaho Statesman
  • CNN files lawsuit against Blaine County over Bergdahl records

    IDOG
    4 Jul 2014 | 11:06 am
    Cable News Network has filed a lawsuit against Blaine County seeking information from a 1999 police investigation involving the family of Bowe Bergdahl, the Wood River Valley soldier who spent five years in captivity of the Taliban. From the Idaho Mountain Express
 
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    OpenSecrets Blog

  • Primary Threat in Alaska has GOP Establishment Shuddering

    Lalita Clozel
    18 Aug 2014 | 12:00 pm
    In Alaska’s Senate primary race, the Republican establishment has downplayed threats to its top candidate, Dan Sullivan. Yet his challengers, Joe Miller and Mead Treadwell, have triggered a frenzy of last-minute spending to ensure Sullivan wins the Tuesday election. Dan Sullivan, the frontrunner in the Senate Republican primary in Alaska, is facing stiff competition from opponents Joe Miller and Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell. (Facebook.com) As of late July, Sullivan had about $4.1 million in the bank — over three times more than Treadwell, the lieutenant governor, who had banked $1.2…
  • Waning Influence, Part 2: Does Congressional Gridlock Lock Up K Street?

    Sarah Bryner
    18 Aug 2014 | 8:04 am
    As the total amount of money spent on lobbying continues to fall, many analysts — including the staff at the Center for Responsive Politics — cite congressional gridlock as a cause of the decline. The 113th Congress, one of the least popular in history, is known for its apparent inability to pass legislation. Given the perceived ineffectiveness of Congress, it may be no surprise that the amount spent on lobbying – which is usually undertaken to influence members of the House and Senate — has declined. While a lobbying campaign could have resulted in the passage of a bill…
  • Obama Campaign Alums Still In Demand In 2014

    Andrew Mayersohn
    13 Aug 2014 | 9:19 am
    An ad produced by Democratic campaign vendor Shorr Johnson Magnus for Priorities USA Action in 2012. (Original on YouTube) Each election cycle, political vendors — advertising firms, direct mail companies, fundraising professionals, and the like — are paid billions of dollars to flood airwaves and mailboxes, but most voters never hear their names. Unless they succeed or fail spectacularly, vendors rarely receive much coverage even by the political press. With almost three-quarters of a cycle’s worth of FEC reports, however, we have the hard data to figure out which firms…
  • NCAA Is On Its K Street A-Game

    Lalita Clozel
    12 Aug 2014 | 9:12 am
    Mark Emmert, the president of the NCAA, has faced scalding criticism on the issue of student amateurism. The association is now stepping up its lobbying effort. (Twitter.com) Facing an onslaught of challenges to its long-held rules enforcing student amateurism, the National Collegiate Athletic Association is going pro in the lobbying arena. After hiring an outside firm, the NCAA has been doling out record amounts on K Street this year. The association is responding to a string of cases that have placed student athlete compensation back on the table. On Monday, the association said it would…
  • Politiquizz: Winners, Losers & Quitters

    David Joyner
    12 Aug 2014 | 7:00 am
    Sen. John Walsh, D-Mont., is the latest congressional “casualty;” he withdrew his candidacy after a plagiarism scandal broke earlier this month. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak,File) With fewer than three months until the general election, campaigns are in full swing as candidates push their supporters to show up at the polls. There’s lots of buzz about what Congress will look like after November 4th, and who will be moving to Washington, but the list of those who won’t be heading back to Capitol Hill is already becoming quite lengthy. The Center for Responsive Politics has…
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    Sunlight Foundation Blog

  • Today in #OpenGov 8/20/2014

    Matt Rumsey
    20 Aug 2014 | 7:36 am
    Keep reading for today's look at #OpenGov news, events, and analysis, including plenty of new data, changes in Ferguson, and trouble for Andrew Cuomo. National News Cause of Action, a group that pursue's government transparency through legal action, is moving against a dozen federal agencies that have pushed back against its document requests. Cause of Action is accusing the Obama Administration of politicizing the requests to avoid sharing information. (Government Executive) New data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows the ebb and flow of wetlands and forests along…
  • OpenGov Voices: How open is your city's crime data?

    Zubedah Nanfuka
    20 Aug 2014 | 7:30 am
    Disclaimer: The opinions expressed by the guest blogger and those providing comments are theirs alone and do not reflect the opinions of the Sunlight Foundation or any employee thereof. Sunlight Foundation is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information within the guest blog. Brittany Suszan, SpotCrime. Image credit: SpotCrime SpotCrime is a public facing crime mapping and alert website founded in 2007. We use open crime data from cities across the US to create maps and alerts for our users. Currently, we’re estimated to be the most visited crime mapping site in the US with…
  • NARA seeks public comment on metadata guidance

    Matt Rumsey
    19 Aug 2014 | 12:17 pm
    The National Archives and Records Administration is working on new guidance for agencies that are "transferring permanent electronic records" to them for archiving. Specifically, NARA is writing new requirements for metadata, information about the records being transferred that is valuable internally and externally for search and organizational purposes. We are excited to say that NARA is reaching out to its stakeholders, both inside and outside government, for feedback on its proposals. Sunlight has read through the relevant documents and provided NARA with some suggestions and examples…
  • The Lone Star State, a loner in corporate registry access

    Gabbi Fisher
    19 Aug 2014 | 11:35 am
    Democrat Wendy Davis and Republican Greg Abbott, frontrunners in a contentious, expensive and corporation-influenced gubernatorial race in Texas. Photo Credits: Wikimedia Commons, Flickr/Gage Skidmore Although the United States’ corporate transparency compares poorly with its international peers, some states, like Washington, stand out for their “better practices” on corporate disclosure. As LLCs become an increasingly common vector for anonymous political donations – due to their unusually lax requirements on disclosing owner names, unlike corporations that must name a corporate…
  • Michael Bloomberg pours millions into abortion fight

    Peter Olsen-Phillips
    19 Aug 2014 | 10:01 am
    Michael Bloomberg has given over $11 million to super PACs this cycle. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons WOMEN VOTE!, the super PAC arm of the pro-choice group Emily's List, just had its biggest fundraising haul of the 2014 cycle, thanks largely to former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Bloomberg, a super PAC founder and mega-donor, gave the group $2 million in July, documents just filed with the FEC show. While Bloomberg has given to the super PAC in the past, in recent years he's devoted the bulk of his political largesse toward advocating for tougher gun control laws, gay marriage and…
 
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    Deeplinks

  • EFF, ACLU Demolish “It’s Just Metadata” Claim in NSA Spying Appeal

    Dave Maass
    20 Aug 2014 | 2:27 pm
    Americans Deserve Full Protection of the Fourth Amendment for their Telephone Records, Groups ArgueWashington, DC - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) today filed an amicus brief in Klayman v. Obama, a high-profile lawsuit that challenges mass surveillance, arguing that Americans' telephone metadata deserves the highest protection of the Fourth Amendment. Larry Klayman, conservative activist and founder of Judicial Watch and Freedom Watch, was among the first plaintiffs to sue the National Security Agency (NSA) over the collection of…
  • We Need Sen. Wyden's Help to Fix the Broken, Anti-User Trade Negotiation Process

    Maira Sutton
    20 Aug 2014 | 11:44 am
    We have joined more than a hundred organizations and tens of thousands of individuals across the US to oppose secret, undemocratic trade agreements that affect users' rights. Together, we defeated a bill that would have put agreements like the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) on the fast track to approval without any proper Congressional oversight. Now the White House, the United States Trade Representative (USTR), and other policymakers that are beholden to corporate interests are putting massive pressure on Congress to pass something like it again. They just face one problem: the Congress…
  • U.N. Free Expression Champion, Congressional Internet Defender, and Groundbreaking Counter-surveillance Artist Win EFF Pioneer Awards

    Dave Maass
    20 Aug 2014 | 11:18 am
    EFF to Honor Former U.N. Special Rapporteur Frank La Rue, U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren, and artist Trevor Paglen at San Francisco Ceremony Featuring the Yes MenSan Francisco - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is pleased to announce the distinguished winners of the 2014 Pioneer Awards: United Nations Special Rapporteur Frank La Rue, U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren, and groundbreaking counter-surveillance artist Trevor Paglen. The award ceremony will be held the evening of October 2 at the Lodge at the Regency Center in San Francisco. Keynote speakers will be Jacques Servin and Igor Vamos, better known…
  • Colombia y México se Unirán para Editar Artículos sobre Derechos Digitales en Wikipedia

    Katitza Rodriguez
    20 Aug 2014 | 3:18 am
    Traducido por Jacobo Najera, ContingenteMX Sabado 23 de agosto, EFF participará junto a Wikimedia Mexico, Rancho Electronico, Contingente MX, Fundación Karisma, Panoptykon Foundation, Hackbo, Enjambre Digital, RedPaTodos and May First Mexico se uniran para editar y mejorar artículos en español relacionados con derechos digitales en Wikipedia. En la ciudad de México, el HackerSpace Rancho Electrónico será la sede para el "editatón", mientras que en Colombia el Hacko. Este evento será una colaboración entre dos hackerspaces en América Latina, en compañía con varias organizaciones…
  • Digital Rights Advocates in Mexico and Colombia Unite for Wikipedia Hackathon

    Katitza Rodriguez
    19 Aug 2014 | 4:59 pm
    Saturday, August 23, EFF will join Wikimedia Mexico, Rancho Electronico, Contingente MX, Fundación Karisma, Panoptykon Foundation, Hackbo, Enjambre Digital, RedPaTodos and May First Mexico to edit and improve the Spanish text of digital rights-related articles on Wikipedia. Joining from Mexico City, hackerspace Rancho Electronico will be hosting its own “editathon,” while hackerspace Hackbo will follow suit in Bogotá, Colombia. This event will be a great collaboration between two hackerspaces in Latin America, along with several digital rights organizations and Wikipedians, who will…
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    The Fine Print: blog posts from Center for Effective Government

  • "Flexibility" for Whom? Irregular Schedules, Other Practices Wreak Havoc on Workers

    jschieder
    19 Aug 2014 | 2:42 pm
    New proposals on the state, local, and federal levels aim to tackle inconsistent hours, haphazard scheduling practices, and on-call shifts among part-time workers. Such practices can wreak havoc on workers' finances, families, and health. Part-time workers are an incredibly diverse group. Part-time work was first envisioned in the wake of the Second World War to cater to the needs of married women, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). As a result, part-time positions were never designed to feed a family, provide health insurance, or supply a pension. Approximately 45 percent…
  • Replacing Toxic Chemicals in Consumer Products: Out of the Frying Pan and into the Fire?

    rwhite
    18 Aug 2014 | 1:20 pm
    With the increased focus on removing toxic chemicals from consumer products, it’s logical to assume that alternative chemicals used in these products will be substantially less dangerous to our health and the environment. Unfortunately, due to the lack of safety information for the vast majority of chemicals currently used in manufacturing, these substitutes may not be any safer than the chemicals they replace.  The Case of BPA As detailed in a recent Scientific American article, the chemical bisphenol A (BPA) is a prime example of this concern. BPA is used to make polycarbonate…
  • 20 Tax Dodgers: $240 Million for CEOs, Big Loss for the American People

    sklinger
    17 Aug 2014 | 10:34 am
    Highlights: 20 firms paid no federal income taxes in the second quarter of this year despite reporting $4.4 billion in profits. Collectively, these 20 CEOs were paid $240 million in 2013 by the corporations they lead, an average of $12 million per CEO. These 20 companies saved as much as $84 million on their annual tax bills last year simply because they paid their CEOs so much. USA Today published a story last week entitled “20 big profitable companies paid no taxes.” Using data provided by S&P Capital IQ, the newspaper identified 20 firms that paid no federal taxes in the…
  • Three and a Half Decades after Ban, PCBs Still Detected in Consumer Products

    afrank
    15 Aug 2014 | 1:46 pm
    Consumer products and packaging ranging from newspapers to cereal boxes contain a category of toxic chemicals known as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), according to a report released Aug. 7 by the Washington State Department of Ecology. The chemicals were banned 35 years ago and are no longer used in manufacturing, but are still generated as a byproduct of certain chemical processes. They pose a variety of human health risks, including cancer and developmental problems. What Are PCBs and Why Are They Dangerous? PCBs were manufactured by combining a substance known as biphenyl with chlorine…
  • Unemployment Insurance: A 79-Year Old Promise to American Workers That Needs Renewing

    jschieder
    14 Aug 2014 | 1:34 pm
    “What was the New Deal?...It was, I think, basically an attitude…that found voice in expressions like 'the people are what matter to government,' and 'a government should aim to give all the people under its jurisdiction the best possible life.'” —Frances Perkins, Labor Secretary and architect of the Social Security Act of 1935 The Unemployment Insurance (UI) program was signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on Aug. 14, 1935, in the midst of the economy’s most severe contraction. At its lowest point, a quarter of the workforce was…
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    Local Open Government Blog

  • Recommended Reading: Ethics and the Public Disclosure Act

    Foster Pepper
    12 Aug 2014 | 12:31 pm
    Foster Pepper's Regulatory & Government Affairs practice recommends reading, "Does Media Coverage of School Shootings Lead to More School Shootings?" to stay up-to-date on conversation related to the Public Disclosure Act. The Stranger originally published the article on August 11, 2014.
  • Court Of Appeals Holds Records Subject To Protective Order As Unduly Burdensome Not Exempt Under The Public Records Act

    Adrian Urquhart Winder
    4 Aug 2014 | 2:00 pm
    In Washington State Department of Transportation v. Mendoza de Sugiyama (Division II), a former employee brought an employment action against the Department of Transportation (“DOT”) and requested certain records in pretrial discovery.  When the trial court granted DOT’s motion for a CR 26(c) protective order on the grounds that the request was unduly burdensome, the former employee submitted a public records request to DOT for the same records.  DOT brought a separate action for declaratory and injunctive relief, arguing that the records were exempt under…
  • Recommended Reading: Open Public Meetings Law

    Foster Pepper
    31 Jul 2014 | 10:35 am
    Foster Pepper’s Regulatory & Government Affairs practice recommends staying updated on state open public meetings law and reading the most recent development as reported by Justin Runquist of The Columbian. Washougal mayor: Council may have violated public meetings law. 
  • Names of Police Officers Involved in Shootings Subject to Disclosure in California

    Steve DiJulio
    25 Jun 2014 | 9:47 am
    The Los Angeles Times requested that the City of Long Beach release names of police officers involved in shootings that occurred while the officers were on duty. The officers’ union sued the City to prevent disclosure, and the LA Times intervened in support of its request. Following earlier decisions in favor of the Times and disclosure, the California Supreme Court affirmed those earlier decisions. Long Beach Police Officers Ass’n v. City of Long Beach, 203 Cal.App.4th 292 (May 29, 2014). Finding that, while disclosure of officers’ names may not be warranted in every…
  • Former Public School Teacher Has No Privacy Right to District Investigation of Sexual Misconduct

    Steve DiJulio
    7 May 2014 | 10:55 am
    In early 2012, The Spokesman-Review requested records from the Riverside School District relating to Allen Martin. Mr. Martin, when a teacher at the District, engaged in sexual conduct with a consenting adult in Martin’s classroom. As a result, the District did not renew his teacher’s contract. Mr. Martin filed a lawsuit to prevent the District’s disclosure in response to the Public Records Act request. On January 30, 2014, the Court of Appeals issued its Opinion upholding the disclosure of the District’s records. On March 18, 2014, the Court ordered that its decision…
 
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    Sunlight Foundation Blog

  • Today in #OpenGov 8/20/2014

    Matt Rumsey
    20 Aug 2014 | 7:36 am
    Keep reading for today's look at #OpenGov news, events, and analysis, including plenty of new data, changes in Ferguson, and trouble for Andrew Cuomo. National News Cause of Action, a group that pursue's government transparency through legal action, is moving against a dozen federal agencies that have pushed back against its document requests. Cause of Action is accusing the Obama Administration of politicizing the requests to avoid sharing information. (Government Executive) New data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows the ebb and flow of wetlands and forests along…
  • OpenGov Voices: How open is your city's crime data?

    Zubedah Nanfuka
    20 Aug 2014 | 7:30 am
    Disclaimer: The opinions expressed by the guest blogger and those providing comments are theirs alone and do not reflect the opinions of the Sunlight Foundation or any employee thereof. Sunlight Foundation is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information within the guest blog. Brittany Suszan, SpotCrime. Image credit: SpotCrime SpotCrime is a public facing crime mapping and alert website founded in 2007. We use open crime data from cities across the US to create maps and alerts for our users. Currently, we’re estimated to be the most visited crime mapping site in the US with…
  • NARA seeks public comment on metadata guidance

    Matt Rumsey
    19 Aug 2014 | 12:17 pm
    The National Archives and Records Administration is working on new guidance for agencies that are "transferring permanent electronic records" to them for archiving. Specifically, NARA is writing new requirements for metadata, information about the records being transferred that is valuable internally and externally for search and organizational purposes. We are excited to say that NARA is reaching out to its stakeholders, both inside and outside government, for feedback on its proposals. Sunlight has read through the relevant documents and provided NARA with some suggestions and examples…
  • The Lone Star State, a loner in corporate registry access

    Gabbi Fisher
    19 Aug 2014 | 11:35 am
    Democrat Wendy Davis and Republican Greg Abbott, frontrunners in a contentious, expensive and corporation-influenced gubernatorial race in Texas. Photo Credits: Wikimedia Commons, Flickr/Gage Skidmore Although the United States’ corporate transparency compares poorly with its international peers, some states, like Washington, stand out for their “better practices” on corporate disclosure. As LLCs become an increasingly common vector for anonymous political donations – due to their unusually lax requirements on disclosing owner names, unlike corporations that must name a corporate…
  • Michael Bloomberg pours millions into abortion fight

    Peter Olsen-Phillips
    19 Aug 2014 | 10:01 am
    Michael Bloomberg has given over $11 million to super PACs this cycle. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons WOMEN VOTE!, the super PAC arm of the pro-choice group Emily's List, just had its biggest fundraising haul of the 2014 cycle, thanks largely to former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Bloomberg, a super PAC founder and mega-donor, gave the group $2 million in July, documents just filed with the FEC show. While Bloomberg has given to the super PAC in the past, in recent years he's devoted the bulk of his political largesse toward advocating for tougher gun control laws, gay marriage and…
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    Free Proxy

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