LePage declares FOG for "Sunshine Week"

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Average Joe
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LePage declares FOG for "Sunshine Week"

How does this guy do it? Declare himself immune from the public's right to know while in the same breath declaring the "most transparent government in the history of Maine" and announcing "Sunshine Week" promoting the importance of open government.

Worse yet, saying he didn't realize that the executive order he signed exempted the advisory councils entirely from the state's freedom of information law. Doesn't he read those things?

Naran
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Posted: March 9 Governor's

Posted: March 9

Governor's advisory group exempted from access law
The LePage administration says the council, which will advise the governor on business issues, needs to operate in private.

By Rebekah Metzler rmetzler@mainetoday.com
MaineToday Media State House Writer

AUGUSTA — .. LePage ...created a business advisory council to advise him on improving Maine's economic climate but ..exempted it ...from ...freedom of information law.

Groups supporting government transparency, including the Maine Civil Liberties Union and the Maine Heritage Policy Center, are criticizing the exemption, saying it is overly broad.

[url=http://www.pressherald.com/news/advisory-group-exempted-from-access-law-...

Naran
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11:45 AM LePage to create

11:45 AM
LePage to create more private advisory panels

By Susan M. Cover scover@mainetoday.com
MaineToday Media State House Writer

AUGUSTA — Gov. Paul LePage said this morning that the business advisory council he created last week is the first of four such "think tanks" he hopes to use to get ideas for improving the state.

.. he (also) ..wants to meet with teachers, those in higher education and environmentalists.

"It's all about having a think tank of people that can be frank and honest and tell you what's going on," he said at the Blaine House. "And then from there, I bring it to my staff and see if we can help."

[url=http://www.pressherald.com/news/maine-LePage-governor-private-advisory-p...

Northarrow
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As a well known moderator is

As a well known moderator is fond of saying…the public's business should be conducted in public.

Roger Ek
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Nobody in the last 16 years

Nobody in the last 16 years demanded that the deliberations of the NRCM be made public.

Naran
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Northarrow - you mean like

Northarrow - you mean like the negotiations on teachers' contracts? (when is that ever going to happen, btw?)
:)

I am waiting to weigh in on this one until we have more information.

Naran
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Update Updated: 1:35

Update

Updated: 1:35 PM
LePage to create more private advisory panels

By Susan M. Cover scover@mainetoday.com
MaineToday Media State House Writer

AUGUSTA — ...snip

...this afternoon (LePage said)... he had known the exemption was included in the order, clarifying his morning remarks.

"Basically, these are people we want to be able to sit around a table and say it the way it is. They don't want to be in the press, they don't want to be public. They are not public workers," he said.
...snip

"There's no secrecy here," he said. "If they want to do it on the steps of the Blaine House, I'm fine with it too....."

[url=http://www.pressherald.com/news/maine-LePage-governor-private-advisory-p...

Naran
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Here's the other side: ...

Here's the other side:

... State Sen. David Hastings III, R-Fryeburg, Judiciary Committee chairman, said he was not concerned with the exemption because the governor would merely get advice from council members.

"If I thought such an advisory board had any actual power and the right to make a decision that affected the lives of people, then absolutely it should be within the right-to-know law," Hastings said.

[url=http://www.pressherald.com/news/advisory-group-exempted-from-access-law-...

Naran
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LePage order to shield

LePage order to shield business group draws criticism
By Jeff Tuttle, BDN Staff
Posted March 09, 2011, at 3:52 p.m.

... exempting his new business advisory council from the state’s Freedom of Access laws is drawing criticism from Democrats who say the state’s Republican chief executive is trying to conceal an extreme agenda.

...snip
LePage defended the need for closed meetings, noting the advisory nature of the councils, which would have no power to create or approve state policy.

[url=http://new.bangordailynews.com/2011/03/09/politics/lepage-order-to-shiel...

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