November: Racine case shows folly of official secrecy

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 alderperson for sharing allegedly confidential communications from […]

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Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council releases 2018 candidate survey results

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: OCT. 18, 2018 Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council releases 2018 candidate survey results Contact: Bill Lueders, president, Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council, blueders@gmail.com, 608-669-4712 Dear Editors: The Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council is pleased to make available the results of its survey of Wisconsin legislative candidates in the Nov. 6 election. We surveyed 204 candidates: […]

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Candidate Survey 2018

Search the 2018 Survey Results We surveyed all candidates for State legislative offices with the following questions: Ending the legislature’s exemption for open records retention:  Do you support ending the exemption in the state’s records retention law for members of the Legislature, which would make lawmakers subject to the same retention rules as all other […]

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Jan. 19, 2017

Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council Jan. 19, 2017 Capital Newspapers Auditorium 1. Call to order. The meeting was called to order at 2:07 p.m. In attendance were Dee J. Hall, Tom Kamenick, Neil Johnson, Larry Gallup, Jonathan Anderson, Orville Seymer, Beth Bennett, Andy Hall, Mark Pitsch, Kyle Geissler, Sean Dwyer, Bob Drechsel, Tom Bier, Rusty […]

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Oct. 12, 2016

Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council Minutes of the Oct. 12, 2016 meeting Capital Newspapers auditorium 1) Call to order and introductions. The meeting was called to order at 2:05 p.m. In attendance were Bill Lueders, Dee Hall, Steve Lovejoy, Orville Seymer, Larry Gallup, Mark Pitsch, Jonathan Anderson, Kyle Geissler, Tom Bier, Andy Hall, Bob Drechsel, […]

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July 21, 2016

Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council Minutes July 21, 2016 meeting Capital Newspapers auditorium 1) Call to order and introductions. The meeting was called to order at 2 p.m. In attendance were Dee J. Hall, Rusty Cunningham, Beth Bennett, Michelle Vetterkind, Tom Bier, Dave Zweifel, Andy Hall, Orville Seymer, Mark Pitsch, Larry Gallup, Neil Johnson, Bob […]

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April 7, 2016

Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council April 7, 2016 meeting Capital Newspapers Auditorium 1) Call to order and introductions. In attendance were Bill Lueders, Bob Dreps, Tom Kamenick, Orville Seymer, Julia Hunter, Dave Zweifel, John Foust, Bob Drechsel, Mike Buelow, Mark Pitsch, Larry Gallup, Tom Bier, Dave Haynes, April Barker, Andy Hall, Doug Glass, Paul Ferguson […]

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Jan. 14, 2016

Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council Jan. 14, 2016 meeting Capital Newspapers Auditorium 1) Call to order and introductions. The meeting was called to order at 1:35 p.m. In attendance were Dee Hall, Bill Lueders, April Barker, Christa Westerberg, Bob Dreps, John Foust, Bob Drechsel, Steve Lovejoy, Mike Buelow, Larry Gallup, Tom Bier, Ernie Franzen, Beth […]

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Our Mission

The Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council seeks to safeguard access to information that citizens must have to act responsibly in a free and democratic society. We cherish Wisconsin’s Open Records and Open Meetings Laws, which declare that because “a representative government is dependent on an informed electorate,” all persons are entitled to the most information […]

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Text of open records law

Public Records Law Listed below is the complete text of the law as of July 2016. Click here for a more detailed and annotated version of the statutes. Annotations are useful references to case law and opinions of the Attorney General that can help explain a passage. Wis. Stat. § 19.31-19.39 (2016) 19.31 Declaration of […]

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Text of open meetings law

Open Meetings Law Listed below is the complete text of the law as of July 2016. Click here for a more detailed and annotated version of the statutes. Annotations are useful references to case law and opinions of the Attorney General that can help explain a passage. Wisconsin Open Meetings Law Wis. Stat. § 19.81-19.98 […]

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Problem areas in open government

As identified by the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council 1. Long waits. The Open Records Law states that requested records must be provided “as soon as practicable and without delay.” It adds that providing access to information “is declared to be … an integral part of the routine duties of [public] officers and employees.” But […]

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Oct. 22, 2015

Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council Oct. 22, 2015 meeting Capital Newspapers Auditorium 1) Call to order. The meeting was called to order. In attendance were Dee Hall, Bob Dreps, Gina Duwe, Orville Seymer, Michael Buelow, Tom Bier, Andy Hall, Mark Pitsch, Doug Glass, Bob Drechsel, Bill Lueders, April Barker, Christa Westerberg and Steve Lovejoy. Guests […]

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Development in Public Records Board case

Dear Council members and supporters: Matthew Blessing, the chair of the state Public Records Board, has just released to me the attached statement, in response to the verified complaint filed by the Council early this week. The statement says the Board intends to revisit the agenda items from its Aug. 24 meeting that were the […]

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July 23, 2015

Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council July 23, 2015 meeting Capital Newspapers Auditorium   1) Call to order. The meeting was called to order at 1:33 p.m. Present were Dee Hall, Steve Lovejoy, John Foust, Bob Dreps, Larry Gallup, Tom Kamenick, Orville Seymer, Scott Bauer, Mark Pitsch, Doug Wojcik, Beth Bennett, April Barker, Bill Lueders, Tom […]

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April 23, 2015

Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council Capital Newspapers Auditorium Minutes of the April 23, 2015 meeting 1) Call to order: The meeting was called to order at 1:35 p.m. Present were Dee Hall, Bob Dreps, Steve Lovejoy, Beth Bennett, April Barker, Orville Seymer, Doug Wojcik, Michael King, Gordon Govier, Mark Pitsch, Bob Drechsel, Tom Bier, Bill […]

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