The Union Leader published an editorial this week calling for the legislature to update the Right to Know law for the digital age, while referencing the selectmen’s abusive lawsuit against Bob and me:
Tuftonboro selectmen are the latest municipal officials asking for citizens to reimburse taxpayers for the time and expense of preparing public records for inspection. State law clearly provides that citizens can inspect public documents free of charge, but can be charged for actual copying costs.
Resident Robert McWhirter wants access to 11,000 town emails. Selectmen say it will cost up to $12,800 to prepare the documents, redacting any confidential information. They are asking Carroll County Superior Court for permission to charge $.25 per page, potentially thousands of dollars.
The law needs to be rewritten for the digital age. State and local governments need to create and archive electronic records, including official email accounts, knowing that the public will read them.
– Read the full editorial at: http://www.unionleader.com/editorial/Update-the-law-Right-To-Know-in-the-information-age-12152016#sthash.OTqBsem5.dpuf
The only thing I would quibble with is the assertion by the selectmen (Carolyn Sundquist, Lloyd Wood, and Bill Marcussen) that it will cost up to $12,800 to comply with the law. Please keep in mind that our taxes already pay the salaries of the town office staff. Replying to Right to Know requests is part of the “normal work schedule,” according to none other than Carolyn Sundquist. There is no added cost.