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Fri March 16, 2007
Advocates Push Open Government During "Sunshine Week"
By Elsa Heidorn
Laramie, WY – The public still has a lot of power when it comes to accessing government documents in Wyoming, despite a measure that keeps early drafts of legislation secret. That's according to the lawyer for the Wyoming Press Association, Bruce Moats. This week, press organizations have been highlighting the importance of open government in what they call Sunshine Week. Wyoming legislators passed a bill last year that allows early versions of legislation to be kept secret from the public. Moats disagrees with that bill, but he says in battles for open government the public still has a trump card.
Open Government 2 15.6 SEC
The best think I do when I fight for openness is ask public officials why, why can't the public know? And I find that's a very difficult thing for public officials to answer.
Moats says besides the success of public pressure, Wyoming courts have also ruled in favor of public access to documents in most cases.