ADVERTISEMENT
Advertise Here
Archive

Eye On Boise

It’s your right to know

One way to promote compliance with the state’s open meetings and public records laws is simply to educate people about them, from public officials to reporters to citizens, so that everyone knows what’s required and what they’re supposed to do. That’s the idea behind a series of seminars that Idahoans for Openness in Government (IDOG) has been holding around the state since 2004 in partnership with Attorney General Lawrence Wasden; you may have gone to or heard about one near you. It seems to be working; the Associated Press reported earlier this year that since the seminars started, questions to the Attorney General’s office about possible open meetings and public records law violations have dropped – from two to three a week, to roughly one a month.

IDOG (its website is www.openidaho.org) is a non-profit coalition of media folks, public officials, civic-minded groups and others; I’m IDOG’s president and co-founder (with Dean Miller, the Idaho Falls Post-Register editor who’s currently on a Nieman fellowship at Harvard). Our seminars proved so popular and we got so many requests that we applied for, and received, a $30,000 grant to create a portable, DVD version of the seminar that we can make available to anyone. That’s in production now, and will be out early next year. A highlight of the DVD will be skits driving home what is and isn’t permitted under the law, which at the seminars are a fun, audience-participation thing. On the DVD, the skits are staged in the Idaho Public TV studios and acted out by Idaho Shakespeare Festival actors, with hilarious results.

Here’s why I’m telling you this: Tonight, IDOG and its open meetings and records education efforts will be featured on Idaho Public TV. At 8 p.m. (7 p.m. Pacific), Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden and I will appear on live TV with “Dialogue” host Joan Cartan-Hansen for a special hour-long program focusing on Idaho’s open meetings and public records laws. We’ll be taking calls from the public (800-973-9800), and the show will offer the first look at the wacky but informative skits. The program will re-air on Sunday afternoon. Tune in and check it out; Dialogue also can be viewed online at www.idahoptv.org.


Please keep it civil. Don't post comments that are obscene, defamatory, threatening, off-topic, an infringement of copyright or an invasion of privacy. Read our forum standards and community guidelines.

You must be logged in to post comments. Please log in here or click the comment box below for options.

comments powered by Disqus
« Back to Eye On Boise

Get blog updates by email

About this blog

Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

Latest comments »

Read all the posts from recent conversations on Eye On Boise.

Search this blog
Subscribe to this blog
ADVERTISEMENT
Advertise Here