Public Access Counselor
INDIANAPOLIS | A judge may yet decide if the Republican-appointed State Board of Education held an illegal meeting Oct. 16 when members drafted and approved a letter via email requesting legislative assistance in calculating 2012-13 school grades.
As the Indiana State Board of Education and Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz continue to battle, rather than settle their differences, one point about a previous board tactic must not escape notice.
INDIANAPOLIS | The Republican-appointed State Board of Education and its chairwoman Glenda Ritz, the elected Democratic state superintendent of public instruction, met Wednesday with a mediator trying to resolve the procedural, policy and personal conflicts that have turned recent board meet…
The current status of education policy and administration in Indiana, as professed by Republicans, can best be summed up by applying the apt title of Diane Ravitch's new book, "Reign of Error."
Hoosier state education officials are providing quite the example these days for our children. It's a relief teachers -- not politicians -- are the ones dealing directly with our kids.
INDIANAPOLIS | Indiana's open meetings watchdog is warning state and local government officials that using email to discuss public policy issues among themselves can appear improper, even though the practice is not necessarily prohibited by law.
It would be wrong to focus only on the political angle in the Marion County judge's ruling Friday that ended Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz's lawsuit against the State Board of Education. There's a broader, yet ignored, issue involved here.
HEBRON | The announcement the council planned to hold a potentially historic meeting on Friday had to be quickly withdrawn after town officials were notified the historic element also was illegal.
INDIANAPOLIS | Hoosiers have a new person to call on when they need help navigating Indiana's complicated public access laws.
VALPARAISO | For the second time in about eight months, the Valparaiso School Board received a mild rebuke from the state's public access counselor for violating the open meetings law.
INDIANAPOLIS | Government officials who refuse to turn over documents requested by the public can be fined under a law signed Monday by Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels.
Indiana received high marks Wednesday for state government transparency from the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, but that's not the only good news. Transparency will be improved further because of state legislation approved this year to add penalties to the state's public access laws.
Don't hold me to this, but I think that it was Winston Churchill who said democracy is the worst form of government. He then qualified that by saying "except for all the others."
INDIANAPOLIS | A state official said the Ogden Dunes Town Council violated the Indiana Open Door Law when it held an emergency meeting Jan. 23 to suspend a hotly debated deer cull.
OGDEN DUNES | Former Ogden Dunes Town Councilman Eric Kurtz believes the Town Council violated the Indiana Open Door Law by holding a meeting Monday afternoon without appropriate notification.
As state laws go, Indiana's Open Door Law and Access to Public Records Act have left their dentures in the glass on the nightstand. Those laws lack the teeth they need to enforce them.
Residents eager for guidance on how to interact with their government sparked a spirited discussion on public access laws Wednesday. It was a good training session for the nearly 90 attendees. The seminar also served as a reminder that the laws themselves need some updating, too.
MERRILLVILLE | Local elected officials, police officers and residents were among those who received a better understanding of the state's open meetings and open records laws Wednesday.
Sunshine Week is a perfect time to examine the state of public access to government. Unfortunately, too many public officials remain opaque when it comes to government transparency.
There are two differing legal opinions on whether the Lake County Solid Waste Management District broke the law with a secret meeting. The bigger question, though, is this: What is it trying to hide?
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