Each year the branches of government and government agencies, at the municipal, state, and federal levels, produce countless reports, engage in policy and law-making, and hold meetings. The Freedom of Information Act, a federal law granting public access to governmental information, and similar state laws protect the right of individuals to access this information. However, information about the inner-workings of these bodies is often concealed. Further, in some circumstances, government officials attempt to limit public access to meetings. As the ACLU of Georgia posits, failure to lobby for an open government limits the ability of society to hold government entities accountable and engage in healthy critique of policies.
The ACLU of Georgia works to make sure government information is available, so as to allow citizens, the press, and organizations the opportunity to oversee, and sometimes challenge, government actions.
Doe v. Custer, 1999-2001
General Description: Judicial Qualifications Commission Confidentiality
Summary of the Issues Involved: The ACLU of Georgia filed this lawsuit on behalf of plaintiffs challenging the secrecy of investigations of judges by the Georgia Judicial Qualifications Commission. Before the court could reach a decision in this case, the plaintiff filed a motion to dismiss with prejudice. The court granted that motion, thereby terminating the case.