Supreme Court Rules: Shooter School Records are not Public Records

2020 has sure been a chaotic year for Public Records, and it’s not over yet! What are you doing to prepare for the 2021 records landscape? And are your priorities in-line with your peers?

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Ohio Supreme Court rules: Dayton Shooter School Records are not Public Records

The school records of Dayton mass shooter Connor Betts do not have to be released to media outlets, according to a recent 6-1 decision by the Ohio Supreme Court.

The decision is centered around the Ohio Student Privacy Act, which prohibits the release of student records without the written consent of an adult former student, and “makes no exception if the former student died without giving consent.”


Colorado health department deletes emails of officials working on pandemic despite calls to preserve records

Colorado’s health department has routinely deleted emails sent and received by officials responding to the coronavirus pandemic, despite a request by the state archives that agencies save all documents related to their management of the historic public health crisis.

The Denver Post discovered the Department of Public Health and Environment deleted public records after requesting emails sent and received by state epidemiologist Dr. Rachel Herlihy.

“I’m disappointed because we asked for this,” Roberts, [executive director of the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition] said of the health department’s deletion of emails related to its coronavirus response. “Just because they may not think the messages are important to keep, those are government records and they are the public’s records.”

Read More | The Denver Post

National Retail Federation Files Public Records Request in Response to New Mexico Retail Restrictions

[On Tues., Nov. 10] the National Retail Federation filed a request under the New Mexico Inspection of Public Records Act to release information related to new restrictions placed on retailers and eateries, as the state experiences a spike in COVID-19 cases.

Under the New Mexico Inspection of Public Records Act, state and local agencies are required to respond to a records request within three days of receipt. These actions serve to provide clarification of how government officials are making determinations that impact retail workers and store operations in communities across the state of New Mexico.

Read More | National Retail Federation


Judge Rules: Little Rock, AR Records Law Broken in Police Case

Little Rock and its police chief violated the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act when they failed to provide four Police Department employees with their personnel files, a judge ruled Friday.

Pulaski County Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen found that the city did not provide records related to letters of reprimand issued to the employees within the time period required under the state open records law, according to the order.

Read More | Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette

Peer Resources

Slay the Public Records Request Dragons: Real Stories of Conquest

On Tuesday, Dec. 8 GovQA will be joined by Microsoft and Denver RTD to provide insight into how you can transition to the next “age” – suiting you up with the knowledge to successfully battle the new public record dragons.

Register for the Webinar >>>

Read More | GovQA

The Peers in Public Records Newsletter (formerly FOIA News) is a bi-monthly e-newsletter brought to you by GovQA. It is a collection of the latest trends in public record requests and government transparency initiatives, shared stories, informative case studies, and actionable knowledge that will help you calm the chaos and keep your organization compliant. Send your comments to

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