Steering Committee Minutes, 10/23/2007


Digitization -We’ve been working with Glenn Schlarman (former OMB) on a white paper on digitization -We sent the draft of the paper back to him to add more on the scope of the problem- Patrice will circulate draft to the editorial group and then the larger steering committee -Glenn drafted a FOIA request and we are working with EFF to file the request for a few agencies that have digitization agreements -The joint FOIA requests (OTG and EFF) will go out this week -There is a hearing on egov issues later in the fall- we could submit info to record and maybe testify -If anyone has info on agency digitization agreements, let Patrice know

Nominations – Elliot’s slot is still vacant -Need to hash out process for electing new steering committee members -Patrice will dig out the old governance doc- thinks we updated it to reflect our conversations on make up of SC- whether we want to elect sectors, individuals, or orgs

Policy Updates

Presidential Records -Bill is being held up by Sen. Bunning -There are discussions on the Hill -If you’re interested in engaging on the issue, let Patrice know

Sunshine Week -We met with Sunshine Week coordinator Deb Gersh-Hernandez and Rick Blum to discuss ideas for Sunshine Week -Deb is coordinating an effort to create a "transparency database" with candidates’ positions, statements, and audio/video on transparency. Database will contain answers to transparency questions that Deb has posted on her site and is encouraging journalists and others to ask their reps. Focusing on Pres. now, but wants to reach out to Congressional -This week, Patrice held a conference call with Ron Collins and Paul McMasters, Deb, Rick (SGI), Pete Weitzel (CJOG) and Emily Sheketoff (ALA) to discuss and coordinate efforts -On Friday March 14, Freedom Forum is hosting their FOI day- and this can’t be rescheduled -Other already scheduled Sunshine Week events: On Tuesday March 18, Dan Metcalf and the Collaboration on Government secrecy is planning an even on FOI, focusing on International FOI -Carter Center event on int’l FOI, Feb. 27-29 -We are talking with Deb about a day/day and a half session with panels and keynotes, webcast, 21st century right to know preliminary recommendations. Next morning would be a follow up to discuss next steps with groups -If we don’t end up doing events together, we will at least put together a common program for all events -Need to address the substance of the program: -What should the next administration be doing? -Maybe we should create our own set of transparency questions (Sunshine Week qs are focused on journalists point of view, we could focus on public point of view) -OTG put out a transparency pledge for candidates? -We could conduct a survey of Congressional candidates (on transparency or broader issues?) -Are we being redundant with all these Sunshine Week programs? -We will write up the options and forward to Rosemary for legal opinion

Financial Report

We are in a good position for the short term. We should start thinking long term -Possibility of hiring a consultant to organize funder briefings -Patrice updated the reporting format -We are working on developing fundraising for the community

Steering Committee calls – We will need to reschedule the December call (falls on Christmas) -Gary suggested we change the format of the SC meetings- meet quarterly for longer, more substantive and strategic meetings -Patrice will discuss this with SC members to gauge interest

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