Join OpenTheGovernment.org on March 14 to Celebrate Sunshine Week at the Newseum – February 4, 2014 Newsletter

In This Issue:
News from Coalition Partners & Others
I. Join OpenTheGovernment.org on March 14 to Celebrate Sunshine Week at the Newseum
II. Submit Nominations for Federal Advisory Committee on FOIA Modernization

News from Coalition Partners & Others


Good Jobs First Reports on Job Subsidies

In “Show Us the Subsidized Jobs,” Good Jobs First ranks the states for the quality and depth of states’ economic development subsidies disclosure. According to the research center, all but four states post at least some information online about which companies receive funds. The report is Good Jobs First’s third examination of subsidy transparency since 2007, and rates the states on how well they disclose company-specific award amounts, job-creation figures, and more. Find state’s rankings and the full report here.


Reporters Committee Hosts Panel on President’s Surveillance Review Group

The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press hosted a panel on the President’s Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies’ report. The panel featured experts in the journalism, legal, and technological fields. The discussion can be viewed in full here.

I. Join OpenTheGovernment.org on March 14 to Celebrate Sunshine Week at the Newseum

In conjunction with our friends at the Newseum Foundation, we are happy to invite you to help us kick-off Sunshine Week 2014 at the National Freedom of Information Day Celebration on Friday, March 14. For this year's event, which will you can join live at the Newseum or via webcast, we will be bringing together reporters, advocates, and policy-makers to talk about "action-forcing events" like the break-in to the Media, PA FBI Field Office in in 1971 and leaks of information about the National Security Agency's surveillance programs, and resulting reforms in intelligence policy and practice. The panel will include Betty Medsger, a former reporter for The Washington Post whose reporting based on the stolen FBI documents revealed some of the FBI's efforts to spy on civil rights leaders and other activists. Be sure to check our website for updates on other panelists and other panels.

As in year's past, the event will also include the presentation of the James Madison Award by the American Library Association. The Madison Award recognizes individuals or groups that have championed, protected and promoted public access to government information and the public's right to know.

If you are in the DC area, reserve your seat now by registering online.

II. Submit Nominations for Federal Advisory Committee on FOIA Modernization

Last week the Administration moved one step closer to meeting one of its commitments to improve implementation of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) when the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) published a blog post asking readers to submit nominations for a Federal Advisory Committee on FOIA Modernization. In recent years, open government advocates have asked the Administration to create such an advisory committee to provide a venue for outside stakeholders and the government to regularly work together on critical issues, like the FOIA.

The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), which houses OGIS, is working with the General Services Administration (GSA) to set up the committee. In line with recommendations from civil society organizations, and with statutory requirements, about half of the committee members will be from outside government. Be sure to check out OGIS' blog post to learn more about the committee. Nominations should be sent to ogis@nara.gov.

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