Free speech sometimes is uncomfortable

This column by Randy Evans, executive director of the Iowa Freedom of Information Council, appeared in several Iowa newspapers. The First Amendment isn’t long, but it certainly packs a lot of angst into those few words: “Congress shall make no … Continue Reading

Court says confidentiality for cop files isn’t absolute

By Randy Evans The Iowa Supreme Court delivered an important, and unanimous, decision on April 5 on the issue of public access to law enforcement investigative files. But the exact ramifications of the decision remain a matter of conjecture. Lawyers … Continue Reading

What questions do people ask?

Every week, the Iowa Freedom of Information Council fields a wide range of questions, by email and by telephone, about the state’s public records law and public meetings law. Some of those questions, and the answers we provided, follow. If … Continue Reading

Court to decide if police shooting records should be public

One of the thorniest ongoing government accountability issues in Iowa deals with the question of public access to law enforcement videos and police investigative documents when officers are involved in fatal shootings. The Iowa Public Information Board has been wrestling … Continue Reading

FOI, free speech bills in Legislature

The 2019 session of the Iowa Legislature has before it more than a dozen bills that deal with free speech and freedom of information issues. The Iowa FOI Council is monitoring these proposed pieces of legislation and will notify our … Continue Reading

Cost for naming rights kept secret

The Iowa Freedom of Information Council frequently is called upon to comment on news developments around the state when questions arise about government secrecy. The latest example was in Coralville, where city taxpayers are potentially on the hook for $50 … Continue Reading

Council supports Statehouse blogger

The Iowa Freedom of Information Council is supporting a Windsor Heights blogger who has been refused press credentials to cover proceedings in the Iowa House of Representatives. The blogger, Laura Belin, writes about Iowa government and politics on her widely … Continue Reading

Making laws not about convenience

This column by the executive director of the Iowa Freedom of Information Council was made available to all Iowa newspapers this week.   By Randy Evans One of the biggest contrasts in public access to state and local governments in … Continue Reading

Please consider helping us

The Iowa FOI Council is grateful for the support our many friends have provided us. In each of the past two years, your gifts have become the Council’s largest source of revenue, surpassing the annual dues our members pay and … Continue Reading

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