Archive for the ‘Open Records’ Category
November 7, 2013
I sent the attached open records request to the Shelby County Board of Education addressed to the records custodian. I got the answer shown in the attachment. Since then I have called twice and have gotten no return call. I then sent an email to Jennifer Collins and requested that she put the documents at the front desk a week ago Friday which I would pick up with a check. In the email I said if that was not possible to let me know. I arrived Friday morning and there were no documents and they could not get Ms. Collins on the phone. Also I was not allowed into the general counsel’s office in contradiction to the Tennessee open records law. I snail mailed the check and I finally received some documents about the books by return snail mail rather than by electronic mail. This cost them $2.32 to mail them.
The arrogance of these people is amazing. They don’t think they work for the taxpayers. They get this attitude by watching what goes on in Washington DC. Nothing really has changed since the consolidation. It seems to still be the Memphis School System. Obviously (more…)
October 17, 2013
I have been in contact with a very active group of people in Nashville about common core, school books and material and data collecting. Following is part of a recent email from this Nashville group about a great success they had in reviewing school books and reporting on what is actually in these books. I have recently sent an open records request to the new Shelby County School System requesting access to books, book lists and data collection. I have not yet heard back from them on this request. I will keep you informed on this request. Eventually I will get access to these books, pamphlets, material and data collection. At that point I will need help to review and report as did the Nashville group. It is a big job but are the kids worth it? Please let me know if you are up for the work.
This report came from Dr. J Lee Douglas, Nashville.
September 9, 2013
Strategic Five-Fiscal and Management Plan
I have been reading through the huge five year City of Memphis Management Plan prepared by the Mayor’s Office of Strategic Planning and the PFM Group involving Rick Masson and V. Lynn Evans.
It is fascinating and full of information. It will take me some time to digest it. As I do I will let you, the tax paying public, share in the (more…)
August 8, 2013
My name is Joe Saino and I am President of memphisshelbyinform.com, a 401c3 non profit dedicated to keeping the public here in Shelby County informed and keeping public records open to you, the taxpayers. It is a big job and I am always looking for help. Well I have made a connection with an outstanding young woman and I will let her own CV speak for her.
I am originally from Indiana and moved to Memphis area in 2000. I have BS and PhD in Chemical Engineering and work locally in a sales role for a manufacturing company. I am married with two children. Protecting the future of my children and their peers is the foremost reason for my interest in political issues and fiscal policy. I hope to encourage people to be more involved and better informed on how their government operates and how it affects them. Ultimately, we need to understand that if we want the kind of freedom that America has promised citizens and immigrants for generations, we have to work for it.
Here is her first article on memphisshelbyinform.com and I hope for many more. Thanks Anne.
July 111, 2013
Memphisshelbyinform is a non-profit information and investigative organization composed of concerned citizens and taxpayers. It has the task of monitoring and reporting in depth on Memphis and Shelby County governmental activities and expenditures and educating the public on their efficiency, transparency and honesty.
I have followed this principle for many years and have had some success in informing the public about what is going on in local government. However I believe that many of our local problems are caused by actions at the national level. I have seen trust in government at all levels fall to a very low level. People no longer believe that government has the best interest of our nation as its (more…)
July 30, 2012
I was shocked to read of the subpoena filed on behalf of the Shelby County Commission seeking to find the names of those who commented on Commercial Appeal articles about school consolidation. It appears that some County Commissioners are trying to build a case based on racial attitudes.
Well my name is Joe Saino and I am here to say that the great majority of parents want the best education for their children and that (more…)
Behind Closed Doors
Today the Tennessee Senate will consider Senate Bill 2207 as shown below. This is a bill that the Governor wants to be able to negotiatate how your tax money will be spent to entice a company to come to Tennessee instead of the other 49 states or maybe going to China.
I am a long time advocate of open records as is Ben Cunningham as mentioned in the CA article today on this subject. Ben is a friend and is responsible for the Nashville not being able to raise their property taxes without the voters being able to say Yes or No. I wish we had such a provision here. Also Frank Gibson, Tennessee’s leading advocate for open records, is also against these bills. Even the CA wants open records in most cases.
There is another bill shown below, SB 1168, which is the bill wanted by the local chamber of commerce to close the doors and records on giving away our tax money. You only need to look at the Electrolux deal to see what a bad idea that is. I ask you to oppose both of these bills in the name of open records and against closed door deals with our tax money.
Public Records – As introduced, classifies as confidential the due diligence materials submitted by a company to the department of economic and community development; confidentiality applies until such time as the provider of the material no longer requires its confidentiality.
|Public Records – As introduced, authorizes a local government’s legislative body to designate certain records as proprietary information, and thereby not subject to public records law.|
I read in the CA this morning about money spent to lobby the Tennessee legislature about wanted changes in the open records law. I will not take a back seat to anyone on experience in local open records work. I will flatly say that all meetings, conversations, negotiations etc. need to be open and public, no exceptions. Look at the Electrolux deal to see what happens when they are not (more…)