Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Opinion

October 17, 2006

Boost budget of state access counselor

Indiana officials are always looking to trim costs and save taxpayer money. But despite a need to be careful with funds, the state’s public access counselor should not be given short shrift.

Stephen Key, general counsel for the Hoosier State Press Association, noted that Gov. Mitch Daniels and his staff have reacted favorably to a request to boost the access counselor’s budget.

The budget has been flat since the Legislature made the office a permanent state agency in 1999. Key said the original plan was to give the counselor a second attorney, but Karen Davis now has an administrative assistant because she couldn’t compete with other agencies to attract a quality attorney.

With a budget increase, Davis will be able to afford both the assistant and a second attorney.

The office’s annual report notes that nearly half of the inquiries and complaints came from the public. Between July 1, 2005, and June 30, 2006, a total of 1,880 inquiries and complaints were received, including 222 from the media, 712 from the government and 946 from the public.

This suggests the public is receiving the most benefit from the agency, which is the proper focus. The counselor also made 32 educational presentations, although another staffer should provide time for the official to travel to outside Indianapolis more frequently and visit other parts of the state.

Many different individuals and governmental entities were served, however. For instance, a complaint from a staffer at the Notre Dame Legal Aid Clinic was supported by the counselor, who said the Noble County prosecutor’s office was charging too much for copying records. The charge of $1,595 was deemed excessive.

Also, a complaint from a Phoenix resident was backed by the access counselor, who said the Elkhart County prosecutor is required to disclose any non-exempt records he maintains.

It may be cliché, but the public’s business is public business. It is not too much to ask for state government to maintain an office with a $206,000 annual budget dedicated to ensuring this.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • MAUREEN HAYDEN: A sign of things to come? When U.S. District Judge Richard Young recently ruled in favor of a lesbian couple seeking recognition of their out-of-state marriage, opponents of same-sex unions called him an activist judge who was unilaterally trampling the law. The label didn't

    April 21, 2014

  • NWS GN0406 guns in school image 04 OUR VIEW: Little reason to fear new firearms law A change in state law has proven to be controversial. This newspaper respects the opinions of the objectors -- they have concerns about public safety, a worthy focus of worry. Still, The Goshen News sees little reason to fear. Indiana Gov. Mike Pence

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140417 percussion champs 01 OUR VIEW: Drums, honors and radio shows Every so often we like to tip our caps in this space to the outstanding efforts and accomplishments of our community members. There has certainly been much to celebrate and appreciate in our area the past few days. We'll start with the Goshen High S

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Chicken-keeping ordinance not the best, but it's a start The first ever Goshen chicken-keeping ordinance is restrictive and limited, but it is a start. After weeks of discussions, debate and resurrection, the chicken-keeping ordinance was approved Tuesday on a 4-3 vote by the City Council. As written, the

    April 17, 2014

  • MORTON MARCUS: The truth behind Indiana’s economic condition is often unwelcome Jim Feelwright greeted me warmly as I entered the room: "Well, here he is, Mr. Negative." Since it was a friendly meeting, I borrowed a famous line from the movies: "You can't handle the truth." "You," he said, "just don't want to see what's rea

    April 16, 2014

  • Only you can prevent grass and field fires Maybe you can feel it in the air, too. We at The Goshen News are cheered by the much-awaited, and welcome, return of spring. The greenery makes us glad. Seeing runners and bicyclists -- many in shorts, no less -- reminds us that we need to kick our e

    April 13, 2014

  • Church ministry reaches out to local renters One of the highest hurdles a low-income family has to overcome is finding a decent place to rent -- and the good news is there is more help available for Goshen families struggling with that issue. Working in partnership with the Goshen Housing Autho

    April 10, 2014

  • GN140404 goshen college OUR VIEW: Goshen College is no waste in our book Last week the website www.policymic.com published an article titled, "These 10 Colleges Are the Biggest Waste of Tuition Money in the U.S." Their source of data for the post was from www.payscale.com, which used self-reported salary information from

    April 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140401 Goshen City Hall OUR VIEW: Chicken keeping in Goshen shouldn't be so complex Aproposed ordinance that would allow Goshen residents to keep hens on their property is back. City council members voted down the measure at their March 18 meeting, but at their session this past Tuesday approved a motion to reconsider an amended ver

    April 4, 2014 1 Photo

  • MORTON MARCUS: Indiana Statehouse likely would have thrown water on Noah’s ark The new movie about Noah and his ark, combined with the antics of the Indiana General Assembly, led me to setting the fabled story here in the Hoosier state. We would need an acceptable name for Noah's wife. Naamah is her name in the movie, but schol

    April 2, 2014

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
AP Video
Raw: More Than 100,000 Gather for Easter Sunday Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest
Poll

There has been discussion at West Goshen Elementary School to require mandatory student uniforms in the future. How do you feel about the prospect of mandatory student uniforms in a public school environment?

I think it’s an excellent idea that is way overdue
I think it’s a bad idea and would be restrictive for students and parents.
     View Results