Category Archives: Transparency

Two things real quick: 1) Bill would restrict Pa. coroners’ info; 2) a local effort to correct a federal agency’s mistakes

Two interesting open-records-related stories in the paper this weekend: 1. A bill that would restrict public access to autopsy reports is awaiting a vote in the state Senate. It’s a classic argument: Coroners cite privacy concerns; open-records advocates cite accountability concerns. … Continue reading

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Jury selection held secretly in case of parents charged in adopted Russian son’s death

The judge in a high-profile York County case said he was concerned that if information that jury selection was taking place had been made public, there would have been a “big story” in the York Daily Record/Sunday News before selection … Continue reading

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Budget cuts threaten Data.gov, other transparency sites

Reports are that data.gov, a federal website designed to increase the public’s access to information about agencies, will shut down along with several other similar transparency websites. The Sunlight Foundation is running an online petition drive to send a message … Continue reading

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Study: If gov’t agency is open, people feel better about their community

The more transparent a government is, the more empowered its citizens feel and the more likely they are to feel good about their community, a new Pew Research Center project reports. Fascinating, considering how York County, city and school district … Continue reading

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Audit gives York County drug forfeiture fund high marks

An audit of the York County Drug Forfeiture Fund found that a random selection of receipts were properly recorded, York County District Attorney Tom Kearney said Wednesday in a news release. Read more here. We’ve reported how state law keeps … Continue reading

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Public access story: Meeting taped; those on video not happy.

A western Pennsylvania woman videotapes a borough council’s meetings.Borough council not real happy.Spat ensues.Videos go on YouTube.Public business done in public with public access through videos. Will mayhem follow? Thanks to sharp-eyed @jlmosebach for sending me that tip.

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Clearspending.com reveals the feds’ tangled money web

I said yesterday that I’d fool around on the Sunlight Foundation’s clearspending.com and report back. The foundation created clearspending basically to reveal mistakes in the federal government’s usaspending.gov site. A couple thoughts on clearspending.com: It attempts to show you why … Continue reading

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Open government advocate: Fed spending site ‘useless’

Tracking federal spending is one of those things that’s a great idea but can be really hard to do effectively. Last year, we wrote how difficult it was to figure out just how much stimulus money was coming to York … Continue reading

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Get info on product safety recalls, more with mobile apps from federal gov’t

You can find recall info via your mobile phone by downloading an app that lets you type in the name of a product. You’ll then learn if there’s been a recall on that item. You can also download an app … Continue reading

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Cool tool connects money, politicians and donors almost instantly

Ever read a news story and wonder about the politicians or interest groups involved — where there money is coming from or going, for example? A site called poligraft.com, produced by the Sunlight Foundation, opens the door to some answers. … Continue reading

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