Californians -- ACTION ALERT- SUPPORT ONLINE PUBLIC-RECORDS ACCESS
Date: Wed, 30 Mar 94 17:16:14 PST
Subject: Californians -- ACTION ALERT- SUPPORT ONLINE PUBLIC-RECORDS ACCESS
Forwarded-by: John Gilmore <firstname.lastname@example.org>
From: Jim Warren <email@example.com>
I'm still behind ~600 msgs from 3/7 to now, but think I have cleaned up my
most-crucial GovAccess-related email. Expect to be caught up by this
weekend. I also expect to post details of a GovAccess ftp and gopher
archive site. --jim
BILL WOULD MANDATE FREE ONLINE PUBLIC ACCESS TO STATE'S PUBLIC RECORDS
An *immediate* action-item for Californians.
Semi-model legislation for use in other states. Go get 'em!
On APRIL 5TH, the Calif. Assembly Committee on Governmental Operations
will vote on opening up the PUBLIC RECORDS of the EXECUTIVE Branch of state
government to the same kind of free online access as is now available for
California *Legislative* Branch information.
** Letters of support are needed IMMEDIATELY! (1 page, 1-few paragraphs) **
Assembly Bill 2451, by Assembly Member Tom Bates (D-Oakland area), requires
that all of the public's already-computerized state *PUBLIC* records be
available to the public via the Internet, without state fees (same language
as Bowen's AB1624 last year, re legislative information).
Open government! Accessible from home, work, school, libraries, civic nets.
To my surprise and great delight, this bill appears to have a reasonable
chance of passage -- *IF* there is an outpouring of public support ... but,
*before* legislators have to vote on it.
Faxes and snailmail letters are needed QUICKLY to two places:
1. Assembly Member Tom Bates
fax/916-445-6434 [they need paper/fax copies to wave at fence-sitters]
State Capitol, Room 446
Sacramento CA 95814
2. Hon. Curtis Tucker, Jr., Chairman
Assembly Governmental Operations Committee
Sacramento CA 95814
Greeting: Dear Chairman Tucker and Members of the Committee,
If you have questions, contact Bate's Aide, Rachel Richman - QUICKLY!
Capitol (M-Th)/916-445-7554; District (F)/510-428-1423
GLORIOSKI! YOU CAN *EMAIL* SUPPORT FOR AB2451 TO BATES' AIDE
Hot darg! With hesitancy based on horror stories of drinking from the
Internet firehose, Bates' Legislative Aide, Rachel Richman, has set up an
interum email address to receive communications re AB2541. *IF* you can't
get it together to fax a support letter (or snailmail other communications),
at least send her email: firstname.lastname@example.org .
Be *sure* to include YOUR PHONE number and full snailmail address, so that
any vigilent legislator [yeah, there are some :-) ] can independently verify
that you really did author the message, since it won't have a signa-scribble.
Richman will be printing the msgs and including them with the faxed and
snail'ed letters. Therefore, please write it *exactly* as you would a
paper or fax message.
TELL YOUR POWERFUL FRIENDS - THE COMMITTEE MEMBERS' CONSTITUENTS
Even a *few* faxes and letters from legislators' home-area constituents
are of *great* value.
If you are in any of the Committee Members' districts, or know folks
who are, who would support modern access to open government, you/they
should fax/write/email the Committee member WITH A COPY TO Bates:
Assembly Governmental Operations Committee members:
Hon. Curtis R. Tucker, Jr., Chairman (Inglewood)
Assemblywoman Barbara Alby
Assemblyman Joe Baca (San Bernadino)
Assemblyman Cruz Bustamante (Fresno)
Assemblyman Tom Connolly (Lemon Grove)
Assemblyman Dom Cortese (San Jose)
Assemblyman Dan Hauser (Eureka)
Assemblyman Bill Hoge (Pasadena)
Assemblywoman Betty Karnette (Long Beach/San Pedro)
Assemblyman Pete Knight (Palmdale)
Assemblywoman Diane Martinez (Alhambra)
Assemblywoman Gwen Moore (co-author of AB 2451) (Los Angeles)
Assemblywoman Grace Napolitano (Norwalk)
Assemblyman Chuck Quackenbush (San Jose)
Assemblyman Bernie Richter (Chico)
Assemblyman Nao Takasugi (Camarillo)
AB2451 BILL TEXT
INTRODUCED BY Assembly Member Bates
JANUARY 4, 1994
An act to add Article 3 (commencing with Section 11720) to Chapter 7
of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code, relating to information
LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST
AB 2451, as introduced, Bates. Information technology.
Existing law establishes the Office of Information Technology in the
Department of Finance and imposes on the office various duties concerning
the use of information technologies within state government.
This bill would require the office to develop a plan by January 1,
1996, for free statewide computer-assisted public access to government
information that has been computerized and is subject to public
disclosure. The bill would require implementation of the plan to begin
no later than January 1, 1996, and that the plan be operational no later
than January 1, 2000. The bill would require the office to make various
reports to the Legislature during the development and implementation of
Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes.
State-mandated local program: no.
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
SECTION 1. Article 3 (commencing with Section 11720) is added
to Chapter 7 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code, to
read: Article 3. Public Access to Government Information
11720. The Legislature finds and declares that it is
essential to good government that information that is available
to the public under the California Public Records Act, the Ralph
M. Brown Act, and the Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act be made
available to the citizens of the state, irrespective of where
they reside, in a timely manner, and at the least possible cost.
It is the intent of the Legislature that this goal shall be
achieved by the enactment of a plan that implements the
following strategic goals outlined in the report issued by the
Office of Information Technology in the Department of Finance
entitled "Strategic Direction for Information Technology in
California State Government 1993-1999":
(a) To bring government closer to the people.
(b) To enhance the value of government services.
(c) To make government more responsive to changing public needs.
(d) To reduce the cost of government.
11721. (a) The Office of Information Technology in the
Department of Finance shall work with all state agencies,
appropriate federal government agencies, local government
agencies, and members of the public to develop and implement a
plan to make copies of all information that is computerized by
any state agency and that is subject to disclosure under the
California Public Records Act, the Ralph M. Brown Act, or the
Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act accessible to the public in
(b) The information identified in subdivision (a) shall be
made available to the public by means of access by way of the
largest nonproprietary, nonprofit cooperative public computer
network at no cost to the public, schools, libraries, and other
government entities. The information shall be made available in
one or more formats and by one or more means in order to
provide the greatest feasible access to the general public in
this state. Any person who accesses the information may access
all or any part of the information. The information may also be
made available by any other means of access that would
facilitate public access to the information.
(c) Any documentation that describes the electronic digital
formats of the information identified in subdivision (a) and is
available to the public shall be make available by means of
access by way of the computer network specified in subdivision (b).
(d) Personal information concerning a person who accesses the
information may be maintained only for the purpose of providing
service to the person.
(e) No fee or other charge may be imposed by an agency as a
condition of accessing the information that is accessible by way
of the computer network specified in subdivision (b).
(f) The electronic public access provided by way of the
computer network specified in subdivision (b) shall be in
addition to other electronic or print distribution of the
information. Access systems shall protect the security of
government owned or operated systems using proven security
approaches at the least possible cost.
(g) Information shall be provided in a manner that automatically
redacts private or confidential information when it is commingled with
public information in computerized government records.
(h) Computer feasibility studies by state agencies and state
agency purchases of computer equipment, programs, and services
that involve computerized public information shall include a
component to ensure free public access to the information by way
of the largest nonproprietary, nonprofit cooperative computer network.
(i) No action taken pursuant to this section shall be deemed
to alter or relinquish any copyright or other proprietary
interest or entitlement of the State of California relating to
any of the information made available pursuant to this section.
11722. (a) The office shall be the lead agency in the
development and implementation of the plan specified in Section
11721. The plan shall be completed no later than January 1,
1996. The office shall report to the Legislature on April 1,
July 1, and October 1, 1995, on progress being made in
developing the plan, obstacles to implementing the plan, and
recommendations for legislative changes in this article.
(b) The office shall study the following issues in developing
(1) Methods for offsetting any cost through savings from
making government more efficient and incorporating public access
into all new computer-related purchases.
(2) Integration of a public access requirement into
feasibility studies for purchases of computer hardware and software.
(c) Implementation of the plan shall begin no later than
January 1, 1996, and the plan shall be fully implemented and
operational no later than January 1, 2000. The office shall
report to the Legislature annually no later than January 1 of
each year from 1996 through 2000. State agencies that have not
completed implementation of the plan by January 1, 2000, shall
be prohibited from purchasing computer equipment or computer
programs or contracting for computer services without the
express approval of the Legislature.
"The Internet is its own revolution." [from email@example.com signature-text]
Mo' as it Is.
Jim Warren, columnist for MicroTimes, Government Technology, BoardWatch, etc.
345 Swett Rd., Woodside CA 94062; voice/415-851-7075; fax/415-851-2814
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© 1994 Peter Langston