Transparency bills in trouble in 2016 legislative session

From  The 2016 legislative session has not been a good one for transparency legislation.

A bill requiring governments to provide data instead of print outs of databases died. A bill requiring nonprofits that receive most of their cash from taxpayers to be subject to open records will likely be gutted of the open records provision.

And legislation requiring the state judicial department to abide by open records laws, after the courts exempted themselves from transparency requirements in 2012, doesn’t explicitly put the branch under transparency law. And the bill is slated for a committee that is known for killing legislation.

“I don’t like it,” said state Rep. Tim Dore, R-Elizabeth, of the judicial bill. “It doesn’t do much more than the (judiciary’s administrative records) rules.”

Dore said he would try to amend state Rep. Polly Lawrence’s House Bill 1346 if it came to the floor, but it’s likely to die in the House State, Veterans Affairs and Military Affairs Committee, which is known as the kill committee.

Lawrence, R-Douglas County, said she is trying to address issues such as internal investigations and personnel matters, where the court’s rules differ from the Colorado Open Records Act , but concedes it might be another year before any legislation makes it through the process. She did say her bill doesn’t address the Colorado Commission on Judicial Discipline keeping its budget secret or the state public defender refusing to release the costs of death penalty cases.

Visit for more:

Subscribe to Our Blog