Via Seattle Times
Officials in Ferguson, Missouri, are charging nearly 10 times the cost of some of their own employees’ salaries before they will agree to turn over files under public records laws about the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown.
Missouri’s attorney general on Monday, after the AP first disclosed the practice, contacted Ferguson’s city attorney to ask for more information regarding fees related to document requests, the attorney general’s spokeswoman said.
The move to charge high fees discourages journalists and civil rights groups from investigating the shooting and its aftermath. And it follows dozens of records requests to Ferguson under the state’s Sunshine Law, which can offer an unvarnished look into government activity.