3/24/16 – Daily Hampshire Gazette Editorial
Massachusetts received its statehood in 1788. Two hundred and twenty-eight years later, it still hasn’t gotten its public records laws right.
Traditionally ranked near the bottom of the barrel in the country when it comes to providing public access to government records, the existing law contains wishy-washy language open to interpretation and it lacks teeth. But blame extends beyond the law to a prevailing attitude among many local and state records keepers that a request for public records is a hostile exercise intended to simply to embarrass or inconvenience public servants. Generally, that’s not the case.