The Governor of Utah: Today’s Worst Person in FOI World

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 01:  Utah Governor Gary...

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So, the governor who expressed concern with the bill one day signs it the next. Good people of Utah, it’s time to regroup and renew the fight. The battle has just begun! Your elected representatives have abandoned you, lied to you, ignored you and now DARE you to make the next move.

About 200 people rallied at the state Capitol midday Tuesday to demand the governor veto HB477, a bill that shields more government records from public disclosure. But Gov. Gary Herbert wasn’t swayed.

He announced after 8 p.m. that he had signed the bill into law, saying that with its delayed effective date, there will be plenty of time for a healthy public discussion about how best to ensure the public’s right to know what its government is up to without violating privacy rights.

“This bill provides a way to find the right balance between the public’s right to know and the personal privacy of both constituents and policymakers, while protecting taxpayer dollars,” Herbert said in a prepared statement. “Our goal is open and transparent government.”

“With HB477 now amended [to take effect July 1], the delayed implementation date allows us to have an open public process with robust, deliberate engagement by the public, the media and lawmakers.”

The governor’s news release came just a few hours after some 200 people held a demonstration in the Capitol. Almost all the speakers were from good-government groups — not the news media.

They chanted, “Veto! Veto!” and held signs reading, “Only a cockroach is afraid of light,” “Sunshine, not secrecy” and “Hiding something?”


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  1. […] The Governor of Utah: Today’s Worst Person in FOI World – The Art of Access Blog […]

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