Sign up for the Open Government eNewsletter
We warmly welcome your thoughts on og-blog and especially welcome your emails with suggested postings and links to interesting stories and court cases. If you have something to say about open government in Washington State, sending it to og-blog is probably the best way to get it out. Don’t hesitate to contact us at

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Public Records Show ... $6.2 Million (So Far) in County Sexaul Harassment Suit

The Olympian reports that the tab so far in the sexual harassment case against the Thurston County Prosecuting Attorneys Office is $6.2 million. Public records show the costs. And you wonder why Thurston County is so adamantly upset about the Public Records Act ....

At first Thurston County refused to provide the legal invoices to the public based on a faulty argument that the invoices were not disclosable under the Public Records Act. Then The Olympian urged the Legislature to pass an unusual clarifying bill declaring that invoices are, indeed, disclosable. (The Legislature doesn't often pass bills saying, "Seriously. We meant what we said in the past. But in case you can't read, we'll say it again.") Only after a specific law passed saying the records are disclosable, the county began to provide them. Previous og-blog postings on the legal invoice issue are here, here, and here.