The Colorado Supreme Court upheld the right of those who win open-records lawsuits to be reimbursed for court costs and attorneys’ fees, even if they gain access to only some of the records they claimed were improperly withheld.
Colorado Open Records Act
Some governmental entities in Colorado refuse to release meeting minutes to the public until they are officially approved at the next board meeting, which could be weeks away. Is that how it’s supposed to work?
El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa should make a sequel to his sex-scandal apology video. I’ll be happy to write the script and direct. Let’s title it: Game of Denials.
Fees for public records, protecting the confidential sources of journalists, the Open Meetings Law. These weren’t the topics that grabbed the biggest headlines during the during the 2014 legislative session. But that doesn’t diminish their importance.
Signing the CORA reform bill, standardizing fees that governments in Colorado can charge to fill public records requests, Gov. John Hickenlooper cited President Teddy Roosevelt’s fondness for many of the muckraking journalists of his era.
The House re-passed HB 14-1193, sending it to Gov. John Hickenlooper. If it becomes law, the Colorado Open Records Act will specify research-fee parameters for the first time since it was enacted in 1969.
On a 56-8 vote, the Colorado House rejected Senate amendments to a bill that regulates how much the state and local governments can charge to research and compile public records.
A bill that caps research-and-retrieval fees for public records at $30 per hour passed the Colorado Senate with an amendment requiring that costs be the same for everyone.
An amendment to HB 14-1193 removes the minimum wage requirement and instead caps research and retrieval fees at $30 per hour with a requirement that the first hour be provided for free.
The trick to getting records from Colorado’s health exchange is to make relatively narrow requests. If the request is just right, officials must supply the information within three business days.