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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Rick Scott and the "dark cloud over Fla's Sunshine laws"



St Pete Times editor of editorials Tim Nickens: ‘GIVE AN INCH…" • That was the sarcastic tweet last weekend by Brian Burgess, the communications director for Gov. Rick Scott. He complained about a Times/Herald Tallahassee bureau article describing how Scott's selective release of information about large public pensions advances his political agenda. • Burgess' point: The poor governor gets criticized for not being transparent, creates a website to provide more public information, and still gets criticized by whiny reporters. • My assessment of this snarky tweet: The Scott administration views Florida's Sunshine Laws as a nuisance and the release of public records as a personal favor. It treats public records as private corporate documents and grudgingly distributes what it wants, when it wants — and to whom it wants. • Nearly three months into the job, Scott acts as though he is still the CEO of a private hospital company who has no legal obligation to be transparent. He says he supports open government, and he signed an executive order his first day re-establishing the Office of Open Government created by Gov. Charlie Crist. But it's been downhill since then. • Scott is the Prince of Darkness, avoiding the sunshine of open meetings and public records whenever he can. ...

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[Last modified: Sunday, March 27, 2011 10:01am]


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