At a meeting of the Wichita City Council, it becomes clear that either the city doesn’t understand the meaning of the Kansas Open Records Act, or it has no intention of following it.
During Sunshine Week, here are a few things Wichita could doBob WeeksMarch 17, 2017The City of Wichita says it values open and transparent government, but the city lags far behind in providing information and records to citizens. The City of Wichita is proud to...
Where are our documents?Bob WeeksSeptember 27, 2015Government promotes and promises transparency, but finds it difficult to actually provide. In this excerpt from WichitaLiberty.TV, I give some examples of how little information ...
Discussion of open government in Wichita and KansasBob WeeksJuly 15, 2015Perspectives may differ, but the point is the same -- more government transparency leads to more citizen engagement and better outcomes in communities, states, and nations. In thi...
In Wichita, open records relief may be on the wayBob WeeksJuly 2, 2015A new law in Kansas may provide opportunities for better enforcement of the Kansas Open Records Act. This year the Kansas Legislature passed HB 2256, captioned as "An act concern...
Wichita tourism plan should include spending disclosureBob WeeksApril 20, 2015As part of a plan for spending a dedicated tax revenue stream, the Wichita city council should include disclosure of spending. It would fulfill a campaign promise. When the City ...
I was at the meeting and am still not sure whether Council members chose to ignore the fact that the City’s legal Council
sidestepped the core issue of your complaint, or whether they didn’t understand the fact he avoided the issue. One things for sure it’s going to take a law suit to get any more info. I’ll bet.
Geez. Bob got what he wanted from the WDDC. Can’t you guys give it a rest? The simple way to solve this question is hire an attorney and get an AG’s opinion. But no, you would rather make a political issue out of this.
This is much ado about nothing. Bob, you got the records, bottom line. Your argument is that they should have come to the City, but, while you were reading the open records act to the council, you failed to put these items into context:
45-215(e) reads: “‘Official custodian’ means any officer or employee of a public agency who is responsible for the maintenance of public records, regardless of whether such records are in the officer’s or employee’s actual personal custody and control. ”
45-220(a) reads: “Each public agency shall adopt procedures to be followed in requesting access to and obtaining copies of public records, which procedures shall provide full access to public records, protect public records from damage and disorganization, prevent excessive disruption of the agency’s essential functions, provide assistance and information upon request and insure efficient and timely action in response to applications for inspection of public records.”
And 45-220(e) reads: “Each official custodian of public records shall designate such persons as necessary to carry out the duties of custodian under this act and shall ensure that a custodian is available during regular business hours of the public agency to carry out such duties.”
Here’s the end game, Bob: the WDDC was the “official custodian” of the records. Sure, the City of Wichita could have gone out of it’s way to get those records from the WDDC, but how would have have comported with “protecting the records from…disorganization” and “preventing excessive disruption of the agency’s essential functions?” The term “liberally construed,” as a statutory canon, does not mean you read out, or blue pencil, express sections written within a statute or add in sections or obligations by inference.
This pettiness is just another example of your opposition to seeing Wichita grow and prosper.