Action Center: Louisiana Public Records Act and Louisiana Open Meetings Law

This Action Center page spotlights Louisiana’s Public Records Act and Open Meetings laws. While remarkably progressive in their respective intention, both are under assault by the Jindal administration generally; and particularly with regards to efforts to privatize LSU Charity hospitals. The Jindal’s administration’s use of a so-called “deliberative process exclusion” that effectively bars public access to records under supposed active use by the Governor’s Office and even extending to gubernatorial-dominated agencies such as the LSU Board of Supervisors underscores the heights of probity privatization advocates are going through to dismantle Louisiana’s vaulted but beleaguered Charity Hospital system, select higher education leadership, public schools and State Civil Service and retirement.

NEWS OF INTEREST:

July 7, 2013, The Advocate: Louisiana Spotlight: Lawmakers stall debate on records

Special recognition needs to be given to the Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana for their magnificent educational and advocacy efforts on behalf of open access to government. Their Sunshine Headquarters hosts vital information on public records, open meetings, campaign finance and more.

PAR’s Sunshine Headquarters (includes links to templates for filing Louisiana Public Records Act requests, as well as complaints of the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office regarding violations of the Louisiana Open Meetings Law).

A valiant attempt to undo Governor Jindal’s deliberative process exclusivity was attempted April 30th. Rep. “Dee” Richard‘s HB 19 mandated “deliberative process” notes and documents be subject to the Louisiana Public Records Act. HB 19 was considered before the House and Governmental Affairs Committee. Despite significant support from Advocate Executive Editor and Chair of the Louisiana Press Association’s Freedom of Information Committee Carl Redmond, the Public Affairs Research Council and a number of other advocates (including yours truly), the committee voted down the measure 6-3. Meanwhile a similar measure in the Louisiana Senate, SB 95 by Senator Robert Adley, likely also faced involuntary deferral (status as of press time).

[This page was last updated July 8, 2013]

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