Attorney General

‘Voluminous requestor’ watchdogs to get FOIA assistance from Illinois Policy Institute –

Sure looks like the “FOIA fix” is turning out to be a “FOIA flop”. We recently wrote an article detailing how the College of DuPage attempted to use this new”voluminous requestor” provision on a non-profit organization, and failed. It looks like other entities are trying it out too…and now there is help for those watchdogs that are not a nonprofit organization.

From IllinoisPolicy.org :

December 27 2014

HB 3796 is effectively a watchdog tax that serves only to discourage citizen oversight of public bodies … In response to this outrageous law, the Illinois Policy Institute will begin a new program to assist Illinois’ local government watchdogs in filing FOIA requests.

The Illinois General Assembly on Dec. 3 overrode Gov. Pat Quinn’s veto of a “voluminous requestor” Freedom of Information Act, or FOIA, bill known as HB 3796. In doing so, the bill becomes law. This means lawmakers have made it harder and more expensive for citizens to fight corruption in a state that ranks dead last in public trust and near the bottom in public corruption.

HB 3796 is effectively a watchdog tax that serves only to discourage citizen oversight of public bodies. This is done by designating certain requests for information as “voluminous” under archaic standards.

Some local governments are already using the new law to prevent government watchdogs from accessing public information and to intimidate them.

Transparency delayed is transparency denied. Delays and charges made legal under the new law deter government watchdogs from holding government accountable.

In response to this outrageous law, the Illinois Policy Institute will begin a new program to assist Illinois’ local government watchdogs in continue reading at illinoispolicy.org…

 

8 replies »

    • It would be a logistical nightmare. Here is one example: What will they do when a public body says “no”? Will they sue for the records? File complaint with the AG? Or will they leave it up to the person that wants the records, but did not actually request them in their name?

  1. ARTICLE 1 ~ BILL OF RIGHTS

    SECTION 1. INHERENT AND INALIENABLE RIGHTS
    All men are by nature free and independent and have certain inherent and inalienable rights among which are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. To secure these rights
    and the protection of property, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. – (Source: Illinois Constitution.)

    One of these God-given inalienable rights is a right by the self-governed to know exactly what gov’t is doing. Gov’t is instituted among men to secure our rights… yet the Corrupt Illinois state legislature makes people pay to use their rights.

  2. Of course the democrat controlled state legislature voted to override Quinn’s veto, organized crime fears bright lights.