Associated Press: Anthony judge wants public records law changed

BY MIKE SCHNEIDER

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The judge in the Casey Anthony case has urged the
Florida Legislature to change the state’s laws to keep jurors’ names secret in
high-profile cases, especially when they might receive threats because of a
verdict.

Judge Belvin Perry wrote in an order that releasing the names of jurors
“makes a mockery” of Florida’s privacy law, . . . → Read More: Associated Press: Anthony judge wants public records law changed

St. Petersburg Times: Keep openness in court

EDITORIAL

As the adage goes, hard cases can make bad law. They also can result in closing public records that should not be kept secret. As the anger over the outcome of the Casey Anthony case fades, so should interest by state lawmakers in filing legislation to keep the names of jurors secret. Judges already have the . . . → Read More: St. Petersburg Times: Keep openness in court

Miami Herald: Teen’s death in West Palm Beach lockup raises questions about new law

State juvenile justice administrators have a tape of a dying teen in custody in Palm Beach County. Two lockup workers have been fired and several others suspended.

BY CAROL MARBIN MILLER

Two weeks after a controversial state law took effect making it illegal for government agencies to make photos or recordings of a death public,  the statute will face . . . → Read More: Miami Herald: Teen’s death in West Palm Beach lockup raises questions about new law

South Florida Sun Sentinel: Good Government Initiative seeks to improve public service in South Florida

BY KATY SORENSON

I dutifully read the agenda for my first meeting of the Miami-Dade
County Commission. This was it, the goal I had been pursuing. Finally, a
chance to vote on policy issues, to make my mark, to have an effect on the
governance of our community. A week before, I had beaten the incumbent in a
run-off after a . . . → Read More: South Florida Sun Sentinel: Good Government Initiative seeks to improve public service in South Florida

Tallahassee Democrat: LCSO jail database changes a step backward for public access

BY REBECCAH CANTLEY

In response to a scam, the Leon County Sheriff’s Office this past week changed the way the public can search online for information about arrests and people who are being held in the jail.

No longer can the public search the inmate database by arrest date or name alone. Now the search requires that you . . . → Read More: Tallahassee Democrat: LCSO jail database changes a step backward for public access

TCPalm: Despite bill’s demise, Negron’s effort to ensure public’s right to speak at meetings is appreciated

EDITORIAL

VALIANT EFFORT: Sen. Joe Negron, R-Stuart, made a laudable effort during the 2011 Legislature to fix an apparent flaw in Florida’s Government-in-the-Sunshine Law.

The 1st District Court of Appeal ruled last year that, while the law requires public meetings be open to the public, the law does not give the public the right to speak at the . . . → Read More: TCPalm: Despite bill’s demise, Negron’s effort to ensure public’s right to speak at meetings is appreciated

The News-Press: Scott record mixed toward open access

EDITORIAL

Florida Gov. Rick Scott sends mixed messages about his commitment to open government.

On the one hand, the governor has signed executive orders advancing, or vetoed bills limiting, the public’s access to state documents.

On the other hand, Scott continues to insist on a paywall for members of the public who request these documents — creating an unnecessary . . . → Read More: The News-Press: Scott record mixed toward open access

South Florida Sun Sentinel: Scott’s new aide says his personal email account will be public record

BY KATHLEEN HAUGHNEY

TALLAHASSEE — The new chief of staff to Gov. Rick Scott , Steve MacNamara, sent out a blanket email to his contacts from his personal account reminding them of his new job and the changes it might bring.

The message was clear: Starting July 5, any emails that aren’t personal in nature will be immediately . . . → Read More: South Florida Sun Sentinel: Scott’s new aide says his personal email account will be public record

The News-Press: Florida public records rule a wonder

BY BETTY PARKER

With all the attention given a Florida law that exempts community college employees’ evaluations from being subject to the public records law, there’s some question over how such a narrow, specific exemption came into being.

No other groups in all the education world were exempted, just those in community colleges. And how that came about . . . → Read More: The News-Press: Florida public records rule a wonder

News-Journal’s Lancaster takes over FSNE presidency

Florida Society of News Editors swore in Cory Lancaster, managing editor of the Daytona Beach News-Journal, as the organization’s new president at FSNE’s annual meeting July 1 in St. Petersburg.

The FSNE board elected Mark Russell, editor of the Orlando Sentinel, as its new secretary-treasurer. Patty Cox, managing editor/presentation of the St. Petersburg Times, became vice president.

Lancaster . . . → Read More: News-Journal’s Lancaster takes over FSNE presidency