From bad to worse | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

From bad to worse

Posted By on Wed, Jul 9, 2008 at 8:39 AM

County Clerk Pat O'Brien reported here early yesterday that the Pulaski Quorum Court had backed off the idea of a confiscatory per-page charge for viewing public records on-line.

But, in the Democrat-Gazette account this morning, I want to note something even more outrageous. It is JP Steve Goss' idea, backed by another JP, to require registration to view public records, perhaps accompanied by payment.

Is this East Germany? Think I exaggerate? Hear JP Bob Johnson, as quoted in the D-G:

"If we know who is using it, we might just stop a little mischief."

Will we now also have a sign-in sheet at the courthouse identifying who is looking at which paper records? And will you have to pay a fee for the privilege. And what a great idea is the notion of a public snoop compilation that would allow you to check what records other people are checking.  It would be accessible under the FOI, too, of course.

Message to Steve Goss and Bob Johnson re public records: STFU.

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