Pensacola News Journal: Santa Rosa dismantles TEAM

After a five-year fight, TEAM Santa Rosa, an organization working without a contract, operating outside of the sunshine and allotting members grants, is being dismantled and a new entity will be formed to take its place — evidence of how citizen activism works.

BY LOUIS COOPER
Pensacola News Journal

The group charged with designing an organization to replace TEAM . . . → Read More: Pensacola News Journal: Santa Rosa dismantles TEAM

First Amendment Foundation: Bills would make officers-elect subject to open government requirements

FIRST AMENDMENT FOUNDATION
336 E. College Avenue, Suite 101 Tallahassee, FL  32301-1554
(800) 337-3518 or (850) 222-3518

LEGISLATIVE ALERT

26 January 2012

We’re still sing-sing-singing along on HB 1305 and SB 1464!

A couple of weeks ago, we sent out an ALERT on these two VERY GOOD bills sponsored by Representative Janet Adkins (HB 1305) and Senator Don Gaetz (SB 1464).

In short, . . . → Read More: First Amendment Foundation: Bills would make officers-elect subject to open government requirements

Editorials: Prison privatization should be public

The Gainesville Sun: ‘It stinks’

In an editorial just a few days ago we noted the tendency of state lawmakers to impose Government-in-the-Sunshine mandates on city and county commissions that they wouldn’t dream of following themselves.

Since we made that observation, Tallahassee’s “do as we say, not as we do” contempt for the principles of open government has . . . → Read More: Editorials: Prison privatization should be public

First Amendment Foundation: Proposed Committee Bill 7170

FIRST AMENDMENT FOUNDATION
336 E. College Avenue, Suite 101 Tallahassee, FL  32301-1554
(800) 337-3518 or (850) 222-3518

LEGISLATIVE ALERT

18 January 2012

Were you – like some of our local county commissioners – surprised when DOC announced the closing of prisons around the state?

JUST WAIT!

Proposed Committee Bill 7170 from the Senate Rules Committee amends various section of s. 216.023, F.S., relating . . . → Read More: First Amendment Foundation: Proposed Committee Bill 7170

National Freedom of Information Coalition: Sunshine Week ‘Local Heroes’ Award

Sunshine Week “Local Heroes” Award

Across America, people are making a difference in their communities by utilizing information gleaned from freedom of information laws.

To recognize these “Local Heroes,” Sunshine Week is seeking nominations for its annual awards to individuals who have played a significant role in fighting for transparency in government. The award is presented each year . . . → Read More: National Freedom of Information Coalition: Sunshine Week ‘Local Heroes’ Award

Tallahassee Democrat: First Amendment experts applaud Senate action on public-speaking bill

BY JEFF BURLEW

Barbara Petersen, president of the First Amendment Foundation, is applauding senators who earlier today unanimously voted in favor of a bill granting citizens the right to speak during public meetings.

“It’s a great bill — it really is,” Petersen said. “It rights a very significant wrong.”

Florida is known for having a strong Sunshine Law. However, . . . → Read More: Tallahassee Democrat: First Amendment experts applaud Senate action on public-speaking bill

First Amendment Foundation: 2012 legislative review, presession report

From floridafaf.org

The following is a list of the bills we will be tracking throughout the 2012 Legislative Session. As usual, we have selected those bills with open government and first amendment implications we think will be of interest to our members. After the summary of each open government bill, you will find an easily recognizable indication . . . → Read More: First Amendment Foundation: 2012 legislative review, presession report

Palm Beach Post: Reopen governor’s office; let new gatekeeper have new attitude

EDITORIAL

Gov. Scott has named a new director of his Office of Open Government, a department that in the early days of his administration seemed a misnomer but lately has gotten better marks from journalists and open-government advocates. Bonnie Hazelton will be responsible for providing the best public access to government records, but to deliver she must . . . → Read More: Palm Beach Post: Reopen governor’s office; let new gatekeeper have new attitude

Naples Daily News: Fighting for more open records in Florida

EDITORIAL

Gaetz, of Niceville, near Pensacola in the Panhandle, is laying his power on the line to make an important point.

That point is that emails are public records, just like paper files, and they are to be protected and stored for public inspection — even during transitions of power from one governor to the next.

Gaetz’s legislation to . . . → Read More: Naples Daily News: Fighting for more open records in Florida

First Amendment Foundation: Action needed on Sunshine bill

STARTING THE 2012 SESSION ON THE RIGHT NOTE!

As usual, we have dozens of open government bills on our tracking list for the 2012 session – and another half dozen added just this morning – but what is not so usual is that one of our good government bills is scheduled for a hearing the very first week . . . → Read More: First Amendment Foundation: Action needed on Sunshine bill