Action urged on public records bill

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To the Editor:

The League of Women Voters of Martha’s Vineyard supports H. 3665, a bill to vastly improve access to public records. This bill has been languishing in the House Ways and Means Committee since July, and it is now time for action. We urge Rep. Tim Madden and Sen. Dan Wolf to press the committee to bring it to the floor. In July, Massachusetts ranked 46 out of 50 states in transparency and compliance with the Federal Freedom of Information Act. Since then we have moved down to 47. Transparent government is essential to a functioning democracy. Let’s have Massachusetts be a leader, not a laggard.

In addition to these comments, a letter was emailed directly to both Representative Madden and Senator Wolf urging their support of the bill: “We write you in behalf of the League of Women Voters–Martha’s Vineyard (LWV-MV). The LWV-MV supports making public records public. We ask you to support H. 3665 to improve access to public records. We ask you to urge the House Ways and Means Committee to bring it to the floor for a vote.

“Massachusetts is ranked very low (number 47 out of 50 states) in transparency and compliance with the Federal Freedom of Information Act. Massachusetts residents deserve better than that. Let’s get this done!”

Kris Vrooman, Oak Bluffs

Bea Phear, West Tisbury

LWV-MV