In the HB 3796 veto override vote that sought to further limit access to public records, Senators Chapin Rose and Dale Righter both voted "NO" today, and we appreciate that vote!
A partial "Wall of Shame" is at the bottom of this article (Photos from Gen Assy website).
Unfortunately, the bill had enough support to pass, and both the House and Senate passed the override.
This was a bad bill that we are all stuck with now, thanks to the likes of Sen. Althoff and Rep. Sullivan. Althoof was a Senate sponsor of the bill, Sullivan the House sponsor. Bivins, Radongo, Connelly, Nybo, and Murphy also voted to further restrict access to public records.
This bill allows the following:
The FOIA bill coming up for vote on December 3, 2014, will tremendously increase fees for citizens desiring access to public records.
I have been down the road of public bodies intentionally being evasive about public records, which leads to more FOIA requests to get the documents requested. Then, by the public body's own evasive tactics, a requester can fall in to the "Voluminous requester" category, which kicks in the fees.
"For other than pdf file format":
2 mb will now cost $20.00
2-4 mb will cost $40.00
more than 4 mb will cost $100.00
If you have a recent smartphone, I urge you to take a picture of something and see how many MB in size it is.
That's right, most recent smartphones take pictures of one document and end up with a file size in excess of 4 MB.
So, a one, two, or three page document in a jpg (picture) format will cost the requester $100.00
You are fooling yourself if you think a public body will not do everything in its power to increase the size of an electronic document, and start storing everything in a format other than a pdf, for the sole purpose of increasing the costs of public records so that people will quit asking for them.
This does not apply to media or to nonprofit organizations. It applies to the citizen who requests records for their own research.
Sen. Tim Bivins - Smiling as he votes to keep records from you.
Sen. Christine Radogno - Voted to further restrict access to public records.
Sen. Michael Connelly
Sen. Chris Nybo - Voted to make citizens pay $40.00 for a 2MB photo of a public record.
Sen. Matt Murphy - Voted to make citizens pay $100.00 for a 4MB photo of a public record.
Senator Pamela J. Althoff Sponsored Bill to keep public records from her constituents.
Rep. Ed Sullivan, Jr. Sponsored Bill to keep public records from his constituents.