open government

Editorial: State lacks commitment to transparency

It is clear that Virginia’s state legislature has no real commitment to transparency when the vice-chairman of the Freedom of Information Act Council puts forth a bill to weaken the state’s already woeful open-government standards.

State Sen. Richard Stuart (R-Fredericksburg) has proposed a bill that would mean the salaries of state employees making less than $30,320 per year would not be made public. The bill also says that the names of any public officer, appointee or employee could be excluded from any database of public salaries.

VCOG offers Sunshine Week suggestion: evaluate online meeting minutes of localities you cover

March 15-21 is Sunshine Week, and we at the Virginia Coalition for Open Government are celebrating. I will be teaching a class on FOIA at William & Mary’s continuing adult learning program, and I'll participate in a “meet up” at a Hampton Roads-area open data group.

In the past, many of you have compiled fantastic articles, series and features highlighting the importance of public records and public meetings. We thank you for your efforts.

Sunshine Week set for March 16-22

Sunshine Week, the annual national initiative focusing on open government, is scheduled for March 16-22.

"Anyone -- not just media organizations -- can utilize the resources, have their events listed or be included as participants," ASNE's First Amendment Programs and Partnerships Committee Co-Chairs Lucy Dalglish and Steve Engelberg said in a statement.