Action alert on proposed exemption for records of UW research

The Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council is issuing an action alert regarding Gov. Scott Walker’s proposal to exempt records of University of Wisconsin research from the state’s Open Records Law. The governor’s budget bill, SB21, on P. 181-182, would create this new section of the statute: 19.36 (14) UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN SYSTEM AUTHORITY. Any authority may withhold […]

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Seeking Distinguished Wisconsin Watchdog Award nominations

Nominations are being sought for the 2014 Distinguished Wisconsin Watchdog Award, presented annually to recognize an individual’s extraordinary contributions to open government or investigative journalism in Wisconsin. Dave Zweifel, editor emeritus of The Capital Times and a founder of the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council, was named the inaugural winner in 2011. The late Dick […]

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Statement on John Doe records

A statement by the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council: As a rule, emails created by public officials that discuss government business and policies are the public’s property and should be available to the public. But hundreds, and possibly thousands, of emails created in secret by some of former Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker’s office staff […]

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Opee Award nominees sought

The Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council, a nonprofit group that works to protect public access to meetings and records, is inviting nominations for its 2012-13 Opee awards, recognizing achievements high and low. The awards can recognize actions from February 2012 through to the present day. The awards will be announced in March as part of the […]

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Photographers’ rights workshop

From the ACLU of Wisconsin site, a photographers’ rights workshop to be held October 16, 2012, at the UW Law School in Madison, featuring presenters Christa Westerberg, vice-president of the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council, and Michael P. King, a staff photojournalist at the Wisconsin State Journal.

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AG updates open records guide

From the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism site, titled “AG updates open records guide”, Bill Lueders explains the most important changes in the Attorney General’s open records compliance guide, most notably that records custodians may not charge for the cost of the redaction of sensitive information.

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Municipalities Cannot Recover Costs of Redacting Public Records

From the League of Wisconsin Municipalities site, titled “Municipalities Cannot Recover Costs of Redacting Public Records”: Wisconsin’s municipalities may find they are in a difficult place when it comes to complying with Wisconsin’s public records law. The law requires municipalities to produce any records responsive to a request that can be disclosed while redacting from those same […]

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Supreme Court decides against redaction charges

From the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:  “The Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled Wednesday against the city of Milwaukee and for the Journal Sentinel in a dispute over whether a government body can charge for employees to delete information deemed confidential from public records. By unanimous vote, the high court reversed a Milwaukee County judge’s ruling.”

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