CSU suggests state residency requirement for Colorado open-records requests

From the Coloradoan (Fort Collins): The Colorado State University System may propose changing the state’s open-record policy to honor only requests made by Colorado residents.

Michael Nosler, attorney for the CSU Board of Governors, said the idea generated from his office and described it as still preliminary during Friday’s board meeting in Fort Collins.

“We haven’t settled on any legislative agenda so far,” Nosler said in an interview, adding, “This may be much to do about nothing.”

Open-records laws vary by state, but provide the public access to documents, emails and other information, offering a layer of oversight on decisions made by taxpayer-funded entities. The law applies to all such entities.

Nosler said a staff member in his office raised the idea of restricting the state’s open-records request system to Colorado residents as part of a look at the entire Colorado Open Records Act statute.

Other states have similar rules, Nosler said, and his office was merely considering if it would make sense for Colorado to pursue something similar. Any move forward with the proposal would include consulting with other higher-education institutions and government agencies, including the state Attorney General’s office, he said.

According to The Verge website, seven states have rules limiting open record requests to residents: Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Georgia, New Hampshire, New Jersey and Tennessee. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2013 that the practice was constitutional.

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