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Friday, July 15, 2011

Open Courts Victory

The Washington Supreme Court handed down its decision in In Re DFF. They held that involuntary mental health commitment proceedings cannot be secret. Think of the mischief that could happen if it were otherwise.

NOTE: Michele Earl-Hubbard and Chris Roslaniec of Allied Law Group filed a "friend of the court" brief urging openness.

Monday, July 11, 2011

OG-Pod (Open Government Podcast) Is On the Air!

We are very happy to announce the arrival of OG-Pod. It is hosted by Mike Reitz of the Freedom Foundation and Greg Overstreet of Allied Law Group.

Here is the OG-Pod web site. You can subscribe to OG-Pod on iTunes. Very convenient. You can also follow OG-Pod on Facebook.

Listen in and you can hear Greg's golden smooth radio voice.

P.S. Here is a short piece from The Olympian editorial page on OG-Pod's debut (scroll down).

Mercer Island Fined Over $90,000 for Withholding Public Records

The Seattle Times reports on a federal ruling against the City of Mercer Island awarding $90,560 to a records requestor for the City's "negligent, reckless, wanton or intentional noncompliance" with the state Public Records Act.

This is one of the largest penalty awards in the history of the Public Records Act. Usually penalty awards go toward the attorney fees a prevailing requestor is not awarded. That is, penalties usually reduce the losses a requestor has from not obtaining all of his or her attorney fees. (So much for the idea that Public Records Act penalties are a "windfall" for requestors.) This case, after all, took years of litigation in federal court, which isn't cheap.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

More on Baby Einstein Case Against UW

This story from Courthouse News Service describes the Baby Einstein Public Records Act case and includes links to documents.

NOTE: Greg Overstreet of Allied Law Group was co-counsel for the requestor.