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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.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Beware Indiana government employees: Violating FOI may cost you

Indiana government agencies and employees may soon face fines for violating the state's open meeting rules or public records laws. Currently, individuals may sue to obtain a document that hasn't been provided in response to a request but agencies and employees aren't punished.
A Statehouse proposal could impose fines of up to $1,000 on government agencies -- or their individual employees -- that blatantly violate Indiana's public access laws.

A Senate committee could vote next week on the legislation, which supporters say would put much-needed teeth into Indiana's open door law and public records rules.

The bill would allow judges to fine public agencies or agency workers who intentionally violate open meeting rules or public records laws, which are used by citizens and the media to obtain many government documents. An agency could pay for the fines from its budget, while a fine on an employee would come from the worker's wallet.
More here.

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