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Published on Friday, March 8, 2013

Update on other open government bills

As the deadline nears for bills to make it out of their house of origin, some open government bills continue to move, while others are dead for the session.

One of the bigger disappointments for cities is that HB 1037, which provided cost recovery for commercial public record requests, did not make it out of the House Appropriations Committee. AWC and cities supported this bill as a way for local governments to limit their subsidizing of public record requests made for commercial purposes.

Other bills that failed to make it out of committee include:

  • HB 1198, which required elected officials and public record officers to regularly complete open government training offered the Attorney General.
  • HB 1197, which required public comment before any final action is taken by a governing body.
  • HB 1714, which authorized the recording of executive sessions and exempted those recordings from the Public Records Act.

Other open government bills continue to move, including:

  • HB 1418, which allows cities, towns, and special districts that do not maintain office hours for a minimum of 30 hours per week to post directions about how to make public records requests. The directions must be posted at the agency’s headquarters and on the agency’s website, if the agency maintains one. AWC supports this bill, which has already passed the full House.
  • HB 1005, which creates an electronic filing database at the Public Disclosure Commission and establishes filing fees to pay for the database, including a $200 annual fee for every elected official who receives a salary in excess of $10,000 per year.
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