BEND, OR -- Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel says he’s making it easier for the public to hold him accountable, by publishing public records decisions online.
When a government agency denies a public records request, it can be appealed to the D.A.’s office. Hummel has ruled on 15 such cases and the results are, in themselves, public record. But until Thursday, they were not easily available to the public.
Hummel issued the following statement on Thursday:
"The government's business is the people's business and the records of the work of government thus belong to the public. When the public is denied access to one of their records, I need to conduct a swift, thorough, and fair review of the decision to withhold the record. And after this review I need to inform the public whether the decision to withhold the record was authorized by law or in violation of the law. Posting my decisions in these cases on the District Attorney's public website allows the public to review my work and hold me accountable if they disagree with my decision."