Freedom of information has always been a fluid proposition, its execution shifting with court decisions, new laws and changing conditions and technology. After the General Assembly’s sessions this year, we perceive in the evolution of open information a big victory, a big whiff and a minor loss. The last bespeaks an undemocratic budget implementation practice that could presage more significant damage to government transparency in future sessions.
As we have noted, the Legislature laudably unraveled the Connecticut Supreme Court’s ruling that limited public access to police records. In so doing, legislators restored public accountability to police proceedings, thereby advancing the overall cause of freedom of information — or at least returning it to the level we had experienced before the ruling.
Legislators also struck out in their attempts to subject the UConn Foundation to public information law. The nonprofit fundraising arm of the state university enjoys exemption from the law’s requirements, to the disservice of UConn students in particular and Connecticut taxpayers on the whole.
The foundation’s justification [Read More]