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Monday, February 15, 2010

Monroe Finally Coughs Up Records--5 Years and Maybe $200,000 Later

The (Everett) Herald has this story on Meredith Mechling's five-year quest to get some emails from the City of Monroe about an ethics panel. She has prevailed at the Court of Appeals and a few months ago sent the City a settlement offer for her attorneys' fees and penalties for a little under $200,000.

Other people's money. The only way to explain a five-year fight and eventually paying a six-figure amount to keep emails secret for years. Consider this from the city's perspective: Why "give in" (also known as "follow the law") when you can use other people's money to fight. On and on.

Consider this example the next time someone tells you local government is the "victim" under the Public Records Act. Some would say all the Meredith Mechlings out there are.