The goal of erasing criminal convictions for those who are deserving can be accomplished without removing records from public view.
As part of Sunshine Week, an annual celebration of open government that runs from March 10-16, the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council is bestowing its 13th annual Openness Awards, or Opees.
The more we know about the efforts by officials in Racine to shield public records from public view, the more outrageous it seems.
The courts are clear. The law is clear. The refusals must stop. The public has a right to know about public employee records.
Those in power rarely give it up willingly. What’s needed is a loud and unified public demanding that lawmakers’ records be kept safe and available upon request.
In his first two years, after Republicans took over the governor’s office and both houses of the Legislature, one out of every four bills was introduced and passed in less than two months,
“Your Right to Know” column by Steve Lovejoy Secrecy in government, compounded by court-ordered secrecy, gives rise to speculation and rumor. That never serves the public interest. A case involving Racine City Attorney Scott Letteney and Racine Alderperson Sandy Weidner illustrates that very well. Last August, the city attorney sought an ethics violation sanction against…
The Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council surveyed candidates to gauge support for initiatives to require more openness by public officials.
In Wisconsin’s fall elections, fidelity to open government has come up in several races, for governor, attorney general and U.S. Senate.
The bottom line is that the finalists law exists for a reason: the public interest in key hiring decisions. Yet it’s a law that is routinely disregarded. The public deserves better.