Mike Johnston pledged transparency. We asked why his 500-plus transition committee members signed non-disclosure agreements

Denverite: In early June, Mayor Elect Mike Johnston named transparency as his first principle as he started his transition to be Denver’s next mayor. But a lot of that work is taking place out of sight.

More than 500 members serving on Johnston’s transition team have signed non-disclosure agreements, effectively pledging to keep the public in the dark as they help him decide how to pick the heads of multiple city departments and shape Denver.

The agreement, which the transition committee Vibrant Denver provided and Denverite has reviewed, prevents committee members from sharing confidential materials — including materials that haven’t been marked that way. Confidential materials could include documents, records, analyses and calendars that would give the public information about the city’s and committee’s current operations, the hiring process, strategy, the transition budget and organization, and Johnston’s plans for the future.

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