Monday, March 16, 2009

Kentucky online records access in the middle

A new survey for Sunshine Week puts Kentucky squarely in the middle in terms of availability of on-line records, according to The Associated Press.

The poll, released Sunday for the annual observance of open-government efforts, rates Kentucky 26th among states in a survey of 20 types of records such as death certificates, state audits and school bus inspections. Of the 20 categories, records for 11 were available online, the survey reported, tying Kentucky with four other states. Texas came in first in the poll with all 20 categories available. Mississippi was on the bottom with four.

Gov. Steve Beshear has called on-line access to state records a priority for his administration. A special task force has established a portal website,, to make it easier to obtain such records.

Secretary of State Trey Grayson also has worked to make business and other records kept by his office available online. He is again pushing legislation to make statewide candidates file their campaign-finance reports electronically, so they can be immediately available for public inspection and analysis. The original bill got caught up in a House-Senate dispute and has been attached as a Senate amendment to a House bill, but it is uncertain whether the legislature will consider such "piggybacked" legislation when it returns to Frankfort next week to reconsider bills Beshear vetoes. UPDATE: House Speaker Greg Stumbo said on KET tonight that the House may consider concurrence on some House bills amended by the Senate.

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