In this week’s FOIA round-up, we take a look at experiments with transparency in Florida, Oregon, and Wisconsin that have recently hit road bumps.
Last week, the Tennessee Court of Appeals ruled that state agencies can’t withhold public records just because they’re relevant to a criminal investigation.
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This week’s FOIA round-up: Interior was interested in FBI’s “gold standard” FOIA policy, AP collects data on medical marijuana cards, and an Arkansas judge rules clerk broke public records law
In this week’s FOIA round-up, the Department of the Interior staff emails show employees were interested in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s “500-page per month” policy, the Associated Press created a new dataset by collecting information from each state to see why people wanted a medical marijuana card, and an Arkansas judge rules that a clerk broke state public-records laws, but cites as extenuating circumstances the clerk was acting on advice that they had received from state judicial authorities.
Steven Rich, the database editor for the investigations team at The Washington Post, recently gained access to a database that traced every pain pill distributed across the US between 2006 and 2012. The database provides a look at where opioids have been distributed by which pharmaceutical companies, and shows that the federal government has long been aware of the scope of the opioid crisis. Rich spoke to MuckRock about taking advantage of a lawsuit to gain access to the Drug Enforcement Administration pain pill database and how to use public records to report on private companies.