Mr. Hart’s letter concerning public records requests and HB 1128 in the July 26, 2013 edition of the CK Reporter has some points to be considered. However, if Mr. Hart is not engrossed in the public records requests made of a public agency, his experience is limited and biased.
A few people (“frequent flyers”) make an excessive amount of requests to agencies each year.
Some frequent flyers requests number in excess of 50 per year, devouring valuable staff time and resources, paid for by taxpayers.
Many of the requests are self serving and contain no public benefit. Many of them are not utilized for constructive conclusions or valuable feedback to the agency. They often do more harm than good.
Taxpayers pay for services of a public agency and I hope they have expectations for those services. If taxpayers knew that requesters were controlling the volume of work being produced I’m certain they would support HB 1128 or other clarifying legislation.
Mr. Hart could request the public records request data from his local city or county, by a public records request, in order to personally evaluate the value or necessity of the requests made.
Don’t get me wrong, many records requests are very legitimate, valid and serve a purpose for the public good and the taxpayers. These are not the ones being addressed by this legislation. It is legislation to solve a problem with the current laws on the books.
Gene David Hart