Archive for the ‘Open Records’ Category

Podcast: Coffee Talk with Senate Co-President Pro Tem Glenn Coffee

March 31, 2008

In this week’s “Coffee Talk” podcast, Ok Sen. Glenn Coffee (R-OKC) discusses the state budget, and how things are not as dire as some had predicted.

He says he is pleased that the OK State Supreme Court rescinded its decision to not allow some records to be available online, and commended the Senate for its Open Records policy, the successful Open Books efforts by Sen. Randy Brogdon (R-Owasso), and the recent recognition of the Senate’s Sunshine efforts.

He says that in this age of YouTube and the internet, “people want to have ready access to information” online, and he is proud that the OK Senate is on the forefront of that, and hopes that other state agencies will follow suit.

To listen, click here.

Oklahoma OPEN Records

March 13, 2008

The Wynn Blog is reporting that Oklahoma’s progress toward transparency in government took two steps back this week, with its decision to limit information that is available online on court cases:

In a day and age when we’re moving to more and better online access to our government institutions, this step is unnecessary and unwise. Further, if the personal data has been ordered redacted, what is the harm in allowing court documents to be accessible online? Documents in the federal courts are almost all accessible online. Not all of Oklahoma’s district courts post actual documents online, but they were advancing toward that end.

The purpose of the Oklahoma Open Records act, according to Dr. Joey Senate, of OSU, is “to ensure and facilitate the public’s right of access to and review of government records so they may efficiently and intelligently exercise their inherent political power.” (OKLA. STAT. tit. 51, § 24A.2)

In this internet age, when information is stored and accessed primarily online, one wonders what the purpose of not publishing court records, if not to limit the power of Oklahoma citizens to discover the truth regarding information that is legally “public information.”