Friday, October 19, 2007

Thaddeus-izing Content in State Government

Posted By on Fri, Oct 19, 2007 at 4:00 AM

This week's meeting in Nashville of the legislature’s Joint Study Committee on Open Government invoked a new standard for issues involving the new state ombudsman's office, which is charged with upholding the rights of citizens to access governmental data.

According to The Tennessee Journal, state Comptroller John Morgan, who will oversee the new ombudsman "said he didn't want the ombudsman to get involved in disputes involving the media, since these organizations usually have the resources to deal with recalcitrant public officials on their own."

That didn’t faze Lucien Pera, The Commercial Appeal's lawyer and a panel member representing the Tennessee Press Association. Pera "argued that small town papers might not be able to afford a legal fight and questioned how the office would deal with bloggers such as Thaddeus Matthews in Memphis."

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