October 10, 2023
A group of leading right-of-center groups launched the “Right on Transparency” coalition dedicated to comprehensive government transparency reform with an eye to increasing accountability and creating a more engaged citizenry. The coalition is dedicated to the principles of open government, and, to further those principles, will draft model policies at the state level and educate the public on transparency laws and issues.
Visit the coalition website at rightontransparency.org.
Although various transparency coalitions already exist, “Right on Transparency” is the first of its kind: a gathering point for center-right organizations working in the transparency space. The absence of any right-leaning coalition has led to missed opportunities for reforming transparency at the federal and state level because government oversight may be treated as a partisan issue, rather than a good governance issue. Together, the coalition aims to improve public records and open meetings laws, incentivize proactive disclosure of records, and modernize records management to reflect emerging technology.
Current members of the coalition include:
- Americans for Prosperity Foundation
- Beacon Center of Tennessee
- Better Cities Project
- Goldwater Institute
- Mackinac Center for Public Policy
- National Taxpayers Union
- Parents Defending Education
- Southeastern Legal Foundation
- Texas Public Policy Foundation
The coalition is also releasing three model policies for state and local government transparency:
- Proactive Disclosure of Government Records
- Government should proactively disclosure records and enforcement mechanisms should incentivize proactive disclosure of government records.
- Guiding Principles Regarding Fees for Open Records Requests
- Costs via fees and other monetary penalties should not be a barrier to accessing information and should be narrowly tailored to capture the resources necessary to produce the information.
- Records Management Regarding Physical Record Stored Off-Site or Electronic Records
- Many physical records are now stored in off-site locations, which are not easily accessible by the state and local entities to which they belong. It is therefore necessary to establish appropriate procedures to ensure that people receive timely responses to their requests.
If you are a member of the media looking to talk to a transparency expert or if your organization is interested in joining the coalition, please contact:
Director of Investigations, Americans for Prosperity Foundation