07 October 2006

Weekend Update #4

The Santa Fe New Mexican (the oldest newspaper in the West) was on the story Thursday. My apologies for slighting them.

By JOHN MILLER | Associated Press
October 5, 2006

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - With a month to go before the midterm elections, groups touting private property rights and limited government initiatives from Arizona to Idaho are putting the heat on....

"This is dark work," Maxwell said. "When they go out and campaign for or against the initiative, or give the illusion of campaigning for or against an issue, and when they do it on taxpayer dollars, there should be balance." ... Maxwell's request, under a law requiring public access to many government records, also demands all correspondence with phrases including "petition blockers" and "truth squad," as well as communications about possible student "sleepovers" at schools on election days.

Though Maxwell wants search fees to be waived, officials counter the sheer volume of research could swamp school and government employees already hard-pressed to do their jobs... Maxwell's request, he said, "Is at best a fishing expedition, and at worst a wild goose chase."

In Kimberly, the school district plans to honor the request, but Superintendent Garner says it's struggling to search its records in a timely way, while still protecting confidential information. The district must go through 400,000 e-mails, he added.

Maxwell says the information should be just a keystroke away.

"They're stonewalling us," he said. "Either we have transparent government _ or we don't."
More as it develops.



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