Framingham Online News

MA Senate Passes Public Records Reform Bill

Filed under: Uncategorized by News Staff at 3:16 pm on February 4, 2016

FRAMINGHAM, MA - Today the Massachusetts State Senate unanimously passed legislation reforming how the state handles public records. The legislation, originally sponsored by Senator Jason Lewis, is the first update to the public records law since the early 1970s.

Karen Spilka

Sen. Karen E. Spilka, (D-Ashland)

"An accessible, transparent government is fundamental to the democratic process," said Senator Karen E. Spilka (D-Ashland). "This bill strengthens our public records law to improve access and make the process of requesting records simpler, clearer and more fair. Thank you to my colleagues in the Senate and advocates on all sides of this issue for engaging in a collaborative effort to bring our public records law into the 21st century, while providing flexibility for municipalities and agencies."

The legislation will reduce costs for records requestors and ensure timely compliance with public records requests. The bill also brings Massachusetts in line with 47 other states and the federal government in allowing attorney’s fees to be awarded to plaintiffs who are victorious in court when denied records. The bill requires attorney fees to be awarded, except in certain defined situations.

Under the legislation, each state agency and municipality is required to appoint at least one public records access officer to serve as the point of contact for all public records requests and ...[read more]


Spilka Files Gambling Bill Amendments

Filed under: Uncategorized by News Staff at 3:13 am on September 23, 2011
Senator Karen Spilka

Sen. Karen Spilka

FRAMINGHAM, MA - In an effort to protect municipalities concerned about negative impacts from a bill to expand gaming in the Commonwealth, Senator Karen Spilka, (who represents Framingham and other area towns in the Massachusetts 2nd Middlesex & Norfolk districts), filed amendments today with the Senate Clerk's Office to strengthen safeguards and provide additional protections for surrounding communities.

"The legislature has debated and voted on expanded gambling in Massachusetts for several years now, and this year it looks closer to becoming a reality than ever before," said Spilka. "Throughout this entire process, my main priority has always been to protect and support my district’s residents, communities, neighborhoods, and local businesses. I have filed these amendments to ...[read more]


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