Arkansas open records advocates fear major change in FOI law

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - As open records advocates mark Sunshine Week, Arkansas legislators are looking at a number of bills that would considerably weaken the state's Freedom of Information Act.
    
The state's 50-year-old public records law has had fewer than 24 exemptions carved out, but this year another dozen are working their way through the Legislature. Other bills would make it harder to find records.
    
The Arkansas Press Association says the assault on open records is unprecedented and likely a result of anti-media bias, but a state lawmaker says some of the legislation being considered was introduced before President Donald Trump called reporters the "enemy of the people."
    
Sunshine Week is observed annually around the time of James Madison's birthday. He was a key proponent of the Bill of Rights.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
 

© 2017 Associated Press


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