Proposed open records policy punts on contentious issues

Friday, December 2, 2016, Vol. 40, No. 49

NASHVILLE (AP) — Records custodians across Tennessee would be left to decide over several contentious open government issues under a proposed model policy now open for public review and comment.

A new state law requires all government entities to adopt a public records policy by July, and the state Office of Open Records Counsel has developed has a draft with its recommended best practices.

The draft would leave it up to local governments to decide whether to accept public records requests electronically and if requesters would be allowed to make copies with their phones or other personal devices.

The Tennessee Coalition for Open Government says it "will strongly oppose language that suggests government entities may create rules that inhibit access to public records."

Feedback can be emailed until Dec. 15 to: comments.open.records@cot.tn.gov.