Thursday, July 08, 2010

Poll: Is the Open Meeting Law Tough Enough?

Should there be tougher penalties against public officials who violate the open meeting and public records laws? The Patriot Ledger is conducting a poll. Head on over and cast your vote.

The poll follows its story and video yesterday depicting a clear violation of the law by the Weymouth Housing Authority. (I blogged it also.)

Regular readers of this blog will know how I voted in the poll. I have long maintained that Massachusetts has one of the weakest open meeting laws in the nation because it lacks teeth. The majority of states impose civil or criminal penalties on public officials who violate the law. In Mass., officials who violate the law face no monetary consequences, even if their violations are intentional and repeated.


Anonymous said...

I would like to see the law expanded to include all of the deliberations at the state house. Perhaps we would see a little more work getting done up there.

Bob Ambrogi said...

Good point. The legislature is exempt from both the open meeting law and the public records law. I can think of no good reason why the legislature should exclude itself.