This week’s FOIA round-up: The Interior Department releases redacted records regarding the Border Patrol assistance efforts and the criminal investigation into the Flint water crisis continues
In this week’s FOIA round-up, the Interior Department releases heavily redacted documents to regarding the deployment of law enforcement officials to assist Border Patrol at the U.S.-Mexico border, Michigan authorities issue search warrants for the devices of former governor Rick Snyder as part of an ongoing criminal investigation into the Flint water crisis, and the Intercept obtains emails suggesting the Tennessee governor’s office and Volkswagen worked together suppress the United Auto Workers’ attempts to unionize a factory in Chattanooga.
There are nearly 600 exemptions to the Tennessee Public Records Act, and the list keeps growing. However, a new state law could slow the adoption of new exemptions because it requires the Tennessee House’s Government Operations Committee to review any legislation that creates an exception to the TPRA, which requires government records to be open to public inspection.
Small-town mayors in Tennessee pushed back against legislation that would require government entities to post basic information, such as meeting agendas and minutes, on their websites.
Tennessee lawmakers recently shot down efforts to make more information about economic development deals public, fearing too much transparency could make the state less competitive.
Public records law is making headlines this week with new legislation on the horizon. States across the nation are looking to revise, change, and add new directives that will affect records requesters in their state and across the nation.