On this week’s San Diego Explained, Voice of San Diego’s Mario Koran and NBC 7’s Monica Dean explain the nuts and bolts of the California Public Records Act and detail how some public documents have been key to understanding decisions made by San Diego Unified and other public agencies.
The San Diego Unified School District will soon erase emails older than one year. The district hasn’t said whether existing California Public Records Act requests will still be produced. That the district might allow emails requested before the new policy was enacted to disappear could subvert the very laws meant to ensure the public can examine public officials’ conduct.
In March, a Superior Court judge ruled in VOSD’s favor that San Diego Unified had improperly withheld emails between district staff, school board members and Superintendent Cindy Marten related to the removal of the former principal for the School of Creative and Performing Arts.
We put in the California Public Records Act request that netted the explosive emails revealing SANDAG officials knew Measure A would not generate $18 billion, as they claimed, before Election Day. Only when we threatened to sue did the agency release the records — two months later. In the meantime, the public voted on a false number.
What information you can and can’t get under the California Rules of Court.
San Diego is the eighth largest U.S. city, but it lags behind smaller cities when it comes to open, responsive government.
A website that tracks how agencies respond to public-records requests would make the process open to all taxpayers, not just reporters.
Special mayoral election date set, surprise candidate mulls bid, city charter’s failures and ‘Mayor Romney’?! (No).
The Golden State should be leading the charge in the open-government revolution.
Startups and downs in San Diego, fact-checking dirt-cheap parking, catch up on the public records debacle and more.