Orlando Sentinel Editorial
June 28, 2017
It’s been a bad year for sunshine in Tallahassee.
How bad? In a scorecard on open government recently produced by the Florida Society of Newspaper Editors, 77 of the Legislature’s 160 members received D’s, and three got F’s, putting exactly half below mediocrity on the issue. None scored A’s. Just nine got B’s, and the rest — 71 — got C’s.
And while the Legislature’s majority Republicans and minority Democrats clash on many issues, they found common ground in their indifference at best, and hostility at worst, to open records and open meetings. Low marks went to members of both parties.
A litany of excuses from legislators
Scores were based on how legislators voted on key bills dealing with open government, who sponsored and co-sponsored those bills, and whether legislators took time to consult with Florida’s First Amendment Foundation, the Tallahassee-based open government watchdog. The Orlando Sentinel is a member of FSNE and the First Amendment Foundation.