Editorial/Op

Public Records Vigilante?

By  | 

CENTRAL FIRST BLUE b    At a recent Council meeting, a Central Council Member openly criticized Public Records Requests I have made seeking information on actions taken by Central’s elected officials.  In his words, a person who exceeds this Council Member’s tolerance for Public Records Requests can be described as: “A relentless public records vigilante” engaging in the “misuse of the public records law” “to the detriment of the public interest,” and an “overzealous or malicious person” attempting to “disrupt government operations.”
    These characterizations were made at last week’s Central City Council Meeting.  Six days later, 19th Judicial District Court Judge Don Johnson instructed the City of Central to release hundreds of documents that have been withheld in violation of Louisiana’s Public Records Law.
    I believe it is an affront to the concept of government transparency for any elected official to speak in a way that serves to intimidate any citizen.  I can handle criticism from an elected official for requesting Public Records.  I won’t take that criticism quietly, and I will try to raise public awareness, because the next citizen should not have to fear retribution when they exercise this same right.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *