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The FOI Advocate is a compendium of ideas, edited story excerpts and other materials from a variety of Web sites, as well as original concepts and analysis. When the information comes directly from another source, it will be attributed and a link will be provided whenever possible. The blog relies on the accuracy and integrity of the original sources cited. We will correct errors and inaccuracies when we become aware of them.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

More calls for Illinois governor to overhaul state FOIA

Attorney General Lisa Madigan is the latest open-government advocate to ask for an overhaul of Illinois' FOIA, The Chicago Tribune reported. She suggests that the public access counselor be able to make binding, rather than advisory, decisions when citizens approach Madigan's office for assistance in obtaining records. David Bennett, executive director of the Illinois Press Association, told the paper that the state's FOIA "is not worth the cost of building a fire to burn it."

Atty. General Lisa Madigan today called for an overhaul of the state's Freedom of Information Act, saying the climate of secrecy and corruption that permeated former Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s administration had laid bare weaknesses in current law.

Now in her seventh year in office and considering a run for governor, Madigan called for knocking down barriers that local and state officials reflexively use to refuse routine requests from journalists and other citizens basic public records.

She also proposed giving the public access counselor in her office the ability to make a binding, rather than advisory, decision when citizens go to the attorney general for help in wresting information from reluctant government officials.

More here.

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