One of my favorite features of national Sunshine Week is the effort by cartoonists to highlight the many threats to America’s free press and public access. Today, MissoulaEditor.com brings you two of those political cartoons – as a reminder that our freedoms require vigilance and support. All of us here at the Missoulian work diligently [...]
This isn’t the kind of news I want to hear on “Sunshine Week,” as we celebrate this nation’s guarantee of a free press and our individual and collective rights to public access:
A senior federal employee was illegally demoted after she quietly complained that political appointees within the Department of Homeland Security were blocking journalists’ requests [...]
Newspapers all across the nation are in the midst of Sunshine Week, our annual campaign to educate the public about the importance of our nation’s rights to a free press and public access.
At the Missoulian, we launched the week with a call to Montana legislators to support Senate Bill 217.
Here’s our editorial:
At about this [...]
I need your help. The Missoulian wants to nominate someone – or a group of “someones” – as a “local hero” of open government and public access for the annual recognition sponsored by the American Society of News Editors during Sunshine Week.
Please send me your nominations and contact information, either by replying to this [...]
Kudos are in order today for our sister newspaper, the Billings Gazette, for once again speaking up to insist that the public’s business be conducted in public.
This week, the Gazette filed a lawsuit against the city of Billings, asking for records related to charges of improper use of funds in the police department.
Here is the [...]
The public-access sunshine is bright today in Jackson County, Oregon, where the sheriff wasted three years fighting the local newspaper – the Mail Tribune – over access to records that were clearly public.
Now the county must pay $43,500 in legal fees for the lost cause.
Here’s the start of the newspaper’s story:
By PARIS ACHEN
A three-year [...]
The Billings Gazette has posted a victory for public-records access in Montana, with a judge’s order that Billings police must release patrol car videos from a deadly high-speed chase.
Not only had the city of Billings refused to release the dashboard videos – which are cited as key evidence in a wrongful death lawsuit – but [...]
I wrote about this first last week, shortly after the Associated Press reported on an alarming practice by political appointees in the national office of Homeland Security.
Seems that requests for the release of public documents submitted to Homeland Security under the Freedom of Information Act were subjected to lengthy political reviews for the past year. [...]
In this June 24, 2010 file photo, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano gestures while speaking in Denver. For at least a year, political appointees inside the Homeland Security Department routinely delayed releases of even run-of-the-mill government papers under the Freedom of Information Act while they reviewed requests they deemed controversial or sensitive from news [...]
Closed meetings? Not on our watch!
News today from Billings, where our sister paper the Billings Gazette has filed suit to force Southern Montana Electric Cooperative to open its meetings.
This is essential work – to keep the workings of our nation open and accessible to the people. Thank you, Gazette, for advancing that cause here in [...]