Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press has a belated gift for records requesters

Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press has a belated gift for records requesters

New year. More requests. Better resources.

Written by
Edited by JPat Brown

The new year is looking a lot brighter for public records requesters in search of legal help. Last week, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press announced their new and improved state open records guides, which give an easy-to-read overview of state public records law.

“The Reporters Committee is proud to publish this update to our Open Government Guide, which provides extensive and detailed information on state public records and open meetings laws,” said Adam Marshall, staff attorney for the RCFP. “We hope these guides will be useful to reporters and members of the newsmedia seeking to inform the public on the workings of government.”

The new update includes all 50 state public records law and features a number of topics, including how to file state appeals, how to file a request, and different aspects to state’s public records law, among others. Updating the guides was no easy feat as the organization recruited attorneys and legal firms across the country to contribute their legal expertise to the project in addition to the organizations own manpower.

“We’re incredibly grateful to the attorneys and firms across the country who devoted a tremendous amount of time and effort updating the Open Government Guide chapters,” added Marshall.

RCFP also noted that users might notice two state guides are missing on the sites open records guide. But the group says those state guides, which include Alabama and Minnesota, will be rolled out soon.

Yet the #FOIA community had nothing but high-praise in light of the new state guides:

Users who visit the RCFP’s site will be greeted by a new, sleek design. The group was hard at work last year resdesigning their website and improving navigation to “provide a better experience” for their audience.

On top of new updates, the RCFP was awarded a $1 million grant this past weekend. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association made a special announcement during the 76th Annual Golden Globes Awards ceremony on Sunday as they announced two $1 million grants going to RCFP and InsideClimate News.

Find out more about the RCFP in 2018 by taking a look at their year in review. For additional help on state public records law you can also visit MuckRock’s state open record guides and appeal database.

Plus, stay up-to-date on the state of state public records law this year by reading our ongoing coverage of national state public records law news. If you have your own record story you’d like us to feature, let us know!

Image via RCFP