Key Award Winner Kim Hendrickson

Kim Hendrickson was hired to serve as an independent police examiner on Bainbridge Island. But she became concerned that the police commission didn’t want her to look too closely – and eventually they fired her in a closed meeting. The result was an ethics violation ruling for the commission, legislation to close a loophole in the Open Public Meetings Act and ongoing efforts by Kim to promote accountability and transparency, especially in regard to law enforcement.

Keeping government open and accessible is the cornerstone of our democracy. The Washington Coalition for Open Government is the public’s advocate for open government and transparency in Olympia. Please donate today so WCOG can continue to recognize community leaders like Kim Hendrickson with our Key Awards. READ MORE >

Transparency and public participation are building blocks of good government.

The Coalition was formed to act as an independent, non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated promoting and defending the People's right to know in matters of public interest and in the conduct of the public's business. The Coalition's driving vision is to help foster open government processes, supervised by an informed and engaged citizenry, which is the cornerstone of democracy.

Featured News

Lindquist gives up appeal of vindictiveness ruling

The News Tribune: November 24, 2015
By: Sean Robinson

Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist’s office has given up the fight against a judge’s March 31 finding of prosecutorial vindictiveness in a long-running sex-abuse case. The decision, a motion filed Monday with the Washington State Court of Appeals, withdraws the prosecutor’s appeal of a lower court’s... READ MORE >

Governor Inslee receives open government award

Washington Policy Center: October 22, 2015
By: Jason Mercier

Earlier this month the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association awarded Governor Inslee with its Walter C. Woodward Freedom’s Light Award. This award recognizes commitment to open government and freedom of the press. Read More>> READ MORE >

UW can’t continue to skirt open-meeting law

The Seattle Times: October 23, 2015
By: Seattle Times editorial board

ANY violation of Washington’s Open Public Meetings Act by a governmental board or council is unacceptable — it is an attempt to keep the people’s business secret. Yet the University of Washington’s Board of Regents has shown a consistent pattern of making decisions in... READ MORE >

UW Regents didn’t comply with state open-meetings law when new president named, attorneys and advocates say

The Seattle Times: October 21, 2015
By: Lewis Kamb

Some came ready with prepared speeches of praise about their selection. A stack of news releases composed of quotes from the board’s chairman and the soon-to-be-appointed candidate was on hand for quick distribution after adjournment. Read More>> READ MORE >

Group sues Tacoma police over Stingray agreement

The News Tribune: October 2, 2015
By: Sean Robinson

It’s a six-page document that takes about two clicks to find online, a boilerplate agreement disclosed by 12 law enforcement agencies in eight states. Nevertheless, the Tacoma Police Department insists the public can’t see the details of its agreement with the FBI regarding the controversial Stingray... READ MORE >

O’Rourke says resignation leak broke state law

Yakima Herald: September 22, 2015
By: Mike Faulk

City Manager Tony O’Rourke is accusing “one or more” Yakima City Council members of breaking state law by leaking his plans to resign to local media, but open government experts say the information likely wasn’t protected from public disclosure. O’Rourke made the accusations in an interview Monday... READ MORE >

Nissen v. Pierce County

WCOG: August 27, 2015

The Washington State Supreme Court has ruled unanimously that text messages of government employees that relate to official business, even on their private phone, are public records. Washington Coalition for Open Government President, Toby Nixon, lauded the court decision. Read More>> READ MORE >

State Supreme Court issues landmark public records ruling on text messages

Washington Policy Center: August 27, 2015
By: Jason Mercier

In a 9-0 decision this morning the state Supreme Court ruled that the text messages of government employees that relate to official business, even on their private phone, are public records. From the ruling: Five years ago we concluded that the Public Records Act (PRA), chapter... READ MORE >

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