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Town Square

Editorial: Why the secrecy in Menlo Park?

Original post made on Jan 30, 2013

Recent requests by the Almanac for information about police department matters have produced some troubling responses from the city of Menlo Park.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, January 30, 2013, 12:05 PM

Comments

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Posted by Wayne Martin
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Jan 30, 2013 at 1:11 pm


City of San Jose Quarterly Employee Discipline Report:
Web Link

A few years ago, the City of San Jose invested a citizens' commission with the task of investigating problems with the City's "openness". This resulted in a so-called Sunshine Commission:

Web Link

A goodly number of the Commissions suggestions were adopted by the SJ Government.

It's a shame every local government does not have the commitment to openness that San Jose does.


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Posted by Hmm
a resident of Barron Park
on Jan 30, 2013 at 2:26 pm

So its unclear. Was the reporter legally entitled to the information she was requesting? If the answer is no, her gripe is nullified.
Maybe that's why they inserted a seemingly non-connected issue where someone was denied info they apparently were legally entitled to...a story that happened 2 yrs ago.
Simple question to the reporter: Were you LEGALLY entitled to be provided the info you requested?


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Posted by Simple answer
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Jan 30, 2013 at 2:42 pm

I'm not the reporter in question, but I can give Hmmm a simple answer to his/her simple question: Yes, anyone would be legally entitled to the information she was requesting.

Read carefully. The piece says that "she wasn't seeking any identifying information, which the city would be unable to provide legally because of laws protecting the privacy of public employees, particularly police officers. She also noted in her request that the city of San Jose maintains a public database that reports on a quarterly basis disciplinary actions and outcomes involving all city employees, including police officers."

There's an implicit question in the second sentence in that paragraph: If the city of San Jose understands that this is public information v. confidential information, what's Menlo Park's problem?


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Posted by OK then
a resident of Barron Park
on Jan 30, 2013 at 2:47 pm

If denied a legal request for information, will the Almanac sue? Why not? It sounds like they have standing to do so. If not the Almanac, then who? Lets do more than complain in the paper if laws are being ignored.


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Posted by Wassup
a resident of Midtown
on Jan 30, 2013 at 3:24 pm

They are secretive in Los Altos, too, when one of their own is caught in a misdeed. remember the cop who tail ended a car parked at a stoplight? he was chatting on his cell phone.


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Posted by Wassup
a resident of Midtown
on Jan 30, 2013 at 3:24 pm

They are secretive in Los Altos, too, when one of their own is caught in a misdeed. remember the cop who tail ended a car parked at a stoplight? he was chatting on his cell phone.


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Posted by Paul Blart
a resident of Greater Miranda
on Jan 31, 2013 at 5:12 am

Im sad to say this. Maybe Menlo Park needs to be sued for with holding information from the press and public. Seems like this is a ongoing issue.