News & Notes
Ombudsman’s Blog – Open Matters
Where are My Records. 7/12/19
Assessing Fees for PIA Requests. 7/3/19
Tips for Agency Transparency in the PIA Process. 04/15/2019
PIA in the News
- Records Management and the Public Information Act For this blog, the Public Access Ombudsman is reprinting the latest edition of For the Record, the records management newsletter for the State of Maryland, published by the Maryland Department of General Services (DGS) and the Maryland State Archives (MSA). This issue provides information about the relationship between Records Management and the PIA. Thanks go to ...
- Maryland’s electronic court record system creates ‘loophole’ for secret filing 1/5/20 Capital Gazette.
- Ombudsman and PIA Compliance Board’s PIA Report in the News In new report, Maryland open-records officials urge greater transparency” 1/3/20. Washington Post.
- MD Online Political Advertising law ruled unconstitutional 12/8/19. MDDC Press Association
- OGIS Officially Joins the International Access Community 11/29/19. FOIA Blog
- Maryland public records board needs teeth. Opinion The Baltimore Sun. 11/13/19.
- How Transparent Should Government Be After a Cyberattack? Governing. 11/08/19
- Stewards of Maryland’s public records law seek greater authority to adjudicate disputes 11/6/19. The Baltimore Sun.
- Judiciary ordered to turn over ‘key’ to judge names in Case Search Daily Record. 10/31/19.
- Report highlights several areas for potential improvement in Oregon’s public records law Ginger McCall, Oregon’s First Public Records Advocate, Issues Final Report that highlights several areas for potential improvement in Oregon’s public records law.
- Lawmakers Regroup to Rework Police Transparency Bills 10/9/19. Maryland Matters
- Should charter schools be subject to open-record laws? Washington Post. 10/9/19.
- Maryland agencies lack consistent policies, struggle to comply with public records requests, surveys show. Baltimore Sun. 10/8/19
- Oregon Public Records Advocate On Why She’s Resigning 9/13/19. Oregon Public Broadcasting
- MCPS Says It Will ‘Hold Firm’ on Fees for Public Records 9/13/19. Bethesda Magazine.
- Highlights From The PIA Compliance Board’s Opinions The Public Information Act Compliance Board is holding its annual meeting at 1 pm on Monday, August 19th at 200 St. Paul Place, Baltimore, Maryland 21202. In advance of the meeting, we wanted to highlight some of the Board’s most pertinent opinions about PIA fees, roughly categorized by key topic (PIA fees are currently the ...
- Ombudsman and PIACB Seeking Comments on Research Project Did you know that the PIA Compliance Board and Public Access Ombudsman were requested this year by the Chairmen of the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee and House Appropriations Committee to collect PIA compliance data from 23 state agencies, and to report out recommendations on ways to improve the PIA process? To see the Joint ...
- Where Are My Records? ~This article was submitted by the Office of the Public Access Ombudsman to the Office of the Public Defender Post Conviction Newsletter – Summer 2019. Tips from the Public Access Ombudsman’s Office The Office of the Public Access Ombudsman receives many requests from incarcerated persons who are trying to obtain materials pertaining to their underlying criminal case. ...
- Assessing Fees for PIA Requests Periodically, the Public Access Ombudsman receives questions from both agencies and requestors about the procedures surrounding Maryland Public Information Act (PIA) requests and responses. Below is one such question and answer that the Ombudsman’s Office thinks may be of value to all PIA stakeholders. **The advice given is not legal advice nor is it a binding ...
- Public Access Ombudsman Adopts Regulations The Office of the Public Access Ombudsman (“Office”) would like to inform you that interpretive regulations we circulated this spring have been adopted as of June 17, 2019. We invite you to review the regulations in the current issue of the Maryland Register at the following link, http://www.dsd.state.md.us/MDR/4612.pdf, or on the our website at https://news.maryland.gov/mpiaombuds/wp-content/uploads/sites/20/2019/06/Regs061719.pdf. The ...
- Tips for Agency Transparency in the PIA Process On December 30, 2016 the Public Access Ombudsman published the Report Concerning the Howard County Public School System’s (HCPSS) Handling of Requests under the Public Information Act, which was required by HB 1105—legislation passed earlier that year. One of the key themes from that report was: “Open and forthright communication is essential to a relationship of ...
- Proposed Regulations Noticed – Ombudsman Operations The Office of the Public Access Ombudsman (“Office”) would like to inform you of the interpretive regulations it has proposed to govern the Office’s operations. We invite you to review the proposed regulations in the current issue of the Maryland Register at the following link, http://www.dsd.state.md.us/MDR/4607/Assembled.htm#_Toc4491557, and submit any comments by April 29, 2019. The Office ...
- Let the Sun Shine In: Maryland Public Access Ombudsman Program It’s sunshine week and the Ombudsman has some light to shed on Maryland’s Public Access Ombudsman program. On February 25, 2019, the Ombudsman’s office disseminated a stakeholder survey to nearly 950 people who have participated in either Ombudsman mediation or PIA training, or who have otherwise interacted with the Ombudsman’s office. The recipients included PIA ...
- Court takes hard look at agency’s use of blanket exemptions to deny PIA request, and awards statutory damages and legal fees to requestor PIA – Baltimore City Court Order
- OAG Testifies on Government Transparency Here is a link to a briefing before the Maryland House Health and Government Operations Committee on January 31, 2019 by Assistant Attorneys General Ann MacNeille and Jeffrey Hochstetler. http://mgahouse.maryland.gov/mga/play/4bb8ac66-984b-4b29-b4d6-dfb9d517e0d2/?catalog/03e481c7-8a42-4438-a7da-93ff74bdaa4c