Office of Open Records http://wesa.fm en Five Years After A Major Change, How Open Is Pennsylvania's Open Records Law? http://wesa.fm/post/five-years-after-major-change-how-open-pennsylvanias-open-records-law <p>Five years ago, Pennsylvania’s open records law was changed with the promise of ensuring more information would be more easily available to the public.</p><p>Records requests have gone up, and the new law is seen, overall, as a positive for the commonwealth, but open records officials and some people who use the law see room for improvement.&nbsp;</p><p>Before the change in the open records law, all records were presumed closed unless the requester could prove why they should be open. Now, with the new law, all records are presumed open unless the requestee can prove otherwise. This has resulted in a spike in requests from across the commonwealth.</p><p> Thu, 13 Mar 2014 07:30:00 +0000 Deanna Garcia 25755 at http://wesa.fm Five Years After A Major Change, How Open Is Pennsylvania's Open Records Law? For State-Related Schools, Open Records Chief Sees (Sun) Light Ahead http://wesa.fm/post/state-related-schools-open-records-chief-sees-sun-light-ahead <p>A recent state court ruling is forcing the issue of transparency at one of Pennsylvania's four state-related universities.<br><br>Penn State, Pitt, Temple and Lincoln universities are largely exempt from the commonwealth's 5-year-old open records law providing public access to government information. It was for that very reason that the Office of Open Records dismissed an appealed records request filed by Ryan Bagwell.<br> Tue, 23 Jul 2013 11:28:47 +0000 Mary Wilson 13583 at http://wesa.fm The Right To Know and Pennsylvania's Open Records Law http://wesa.fm/post/right-know-and-pennsylvanias-open-records-law <p></p><p>Pennsylvania's <a href="http://openrecords.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/open_records/4434/citizens%E2%80%99_guide/487947">open records law</a> went into effect in 2009, ideally making it possible for citizens to easily search government records. But some say it hasn't made good on its promise of accessibility. WESA Capitol Correspondent <a href="http://wesa.fm/people/mary-wilson"><strong>Mary Wilson</strong></a> has written about <a href="http://wesa.fm/post/open-records-debate-case-being-less-business-friendly">tweaks to the law</a> being proposed in the legislature, and <a href="http://wesa.fm/post/open-records-chief-calls-charter-schools-scofflaws">those who have violated it</a>.</p><p><strong>Leah Samuel</strong> recently took <a href="http://publicsource.org/investigations/right-know-or-right-no">an in depth look</a> at the status of PA's open records law for PublicSource, including anecdotes from citizens who have been thwarted in their search for information.</p><p><a href="http://openrecords.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/open_records/4434">Pennsylvania Office of Open Records</a> Executive Director, <strong>Terry Mutchler</strong> says citizen requests should not be denied. Fri, 24 May 2013 22:07:40 +0000 Heather McClain 10181 at http://wesa.fm The Right To Know and Pennsylvania's Open Records Law Open Records Chief Calls Charter Schools Scofflaws http://wesa.fm/post/open-records-chief-calls-charter-schools-scofflaws <div id="leadership_content"><p>The head of the state's Office of Open Records is pointing a finger at public charter schools for being the "cancer" of the state's Right-to-Know law.</p><p>The testimony comes as lawmakers are in the midst of an effort to tweak the state's five-year-old law, which lets citizens request government records starting with the presumption that all such documents are public, putting the burden of proof on agencies, not citizens.</p> Fri, 17 May 2013 22:01:40 +0000 Mary Wilson 9778 at http://wesa.fm