Newsletter September 2019.

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Tickets Available for Sept. 20 Breakfast Honoring Madison, Andersen, Bunting Award Winners

Tickets are still available for the annual Madison-Andersen-Bunting awards breakfast on Friday, Sept. 20 when the Washington Coalition for Open Government honors leaders in open government efforts.
Retired King County Superior Court Judge William Downing will be honored with the Madison Award; longtime WCOG executive director Elly Snow Walker will receive the Andersen Award; and watchdog journalist Eli Sanders of The Stranger will receive the Kenneth F. Bunting Award.
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WCOG Founding Member Alan Thompson Remembered

Longtime public servant, former newspaper publisher and founding member of the Coalition Alan Thompson passed away this summer.
Sen. Thompson, 92, passed away July 28, 2019 in his Olympia home. Memorial services took place Sept. 7 at the state legislative rotunda.
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Washington Cities Limit Public Records Retrievals, Citing Costs

Two more Washington cities in recent weeks have curtailed the time they spend on public-records requests, raising alarms among open-government advocates.
The city of Snoqualmie in July imposed a monthly cap for time spent on records requests and barred requesters from possessing any digital devices when they look at documents. The neighboring city of North Bend in June adopted a similar cap on time spent on records requests, but without banning electronic devices.
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King County Superior Court Rules that City Attorneys’ Association is an Agency Subject to Public Records Act


The Washington State Association of Municipal Attorneys (WSAMA) must comply with the state Public Records Act (PRA), a King County Superior Court ruled recently in a case pursued by the Washington Coalition for Open Government. The taxpayer-funded Municipal Research and Services Center (MRSC) acknowledged that it, too, is an agency under the PRA.
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State Supreme Court Weighs Legislature’s Status under PRA

The Washington State Supreme Court could rule at any time on AP et al v. Washington State Legislature, the media-led lawsuit to force state legislators to comply with the Public Records Act. The State Supreme Court heard arguments on Tuesday, June 11.
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Washingtonians Join Knight First Amendment Institute’s FOIA Case

A University of Washington professor is one of five scholars in a Federal Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against a part of the federal Department of Justice, seeking disclosure of court records that are more than 25 years old. The Knight First Amendment Institute, based at Columbia University, filed its FOIA suit August 21, 2019 against the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) for failing to release “formal written opinions” issued by the agency.
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