Iowa FOI Council column available on open records

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Tuesday, November 7, 2017

INA member newspapers are invited to consider publishing a guest column on what is seen as a growing problem with Iowa’s public records law. There is no charge for using the column, which was written by Randy Evans, executive director of the Iowa Freedom of Information Council.

The column can be downloaded here.

Evans writes in the column about the controversial impeachment of Muscatine’s mayor: “The public records law is worthless if people cannot afford to pay the fees to examine government records. It’s obvious to those of us who believe in government accountability that these fees are the way City Hall is limiting in-depth public scrutiny of the impeachment.”

He continues: “Access to government records should not be dependent on someone being independently wealthy and able to pay breathtaking amounts to monitor their government. The position [Muscatine City Administrator Gregg] Mandsager takes goes against the spirit of openness that is the foundation of Iowa’s public records law. This is wrong, and the public should let him know that.”