3/28/16 – From the editorial board
Anyone who’s asked for a public record knows government clerks typically charge a per-page fee before handing over a copy. So it only seems fair that the state Supreme Court has now made the IOU obligation a two-way street. It did so by ruling last week that public agencies can be penalized on a per-page basis when they improperly withhold documents.
At least that’s one way to look at the court’s 5-4 decision in a case affecting Washington’s Public Records Act. The most obvious interpretation is that the ruling gives more bite to the PRA – a nice turn of events for a law that has had too many teeth knocked out, through frontal attacks and sucker punches.