Editorial: Fickle implementation of open records law

From the Post Independent (Glenwood Springs):  Colorado’s open records laws are weak, frustrating and, now we know, fickle.

For example, even though it is 2015 and many records have been kept in electronic databases for many years, Colorado lawmakers rejected an effort this year that would have updated the law to reflect modern recordkeeping.

As Jeff Roberts, executive director of the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition, wrote about existing law, “requesting databases and spreadsheets is a crapshoot in Colorado. “

“Governments will say they are not required to manipulate existing records in response to a request. If the data set you want contains something confidential, such as Social Security numbers, you might be denied access to all of the information. Instead of excluding the confidential field and releasing the remainder, the government chooses to release no records at all.”

Or you might be charged a ridiculous amount of money for hand-redacted printouts that require far more work of bureaucrats than is technologically justifiable.

Visit the Post Independent for more.

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