Voters approved the Public Disclosure Act by initiative in 1972. At the time, the act included only 10 exemptions from disclosure. Today, there are at least 300 exemptions (provided by Legislative staff).
The AGO requested a bill during the 2007 Legislative session to establish a Blue-Ribbon Committee to review all exemptions to the Public Disclosure Act on an annual basis. Senate Bill 5435 became law on July 22, 2007 creating the Public Records Exemptions Accountability Committee. The "Sunshine Committee" will make recommendations to repeal or amend exemptions to the Public Records Act.
The Sunshine Committee meetings provide the opportunity for public testimony regarding exemptions currently being considered by the committee. If you are unable to give your testimony in person, but would like to offer comment on an exemption, you may do so online, or you may print out the comment form and mail it. Comments submitted online or mailed must be received two business days prior to the next scheduled meeting to be included in the written information provided to the committee.
The committee will be chaired by Michael Schwab.
CONTACT THE SUNSHINE COMMITTEE
Staff contact: Rebecca Podszus
What: Sunshine (Public Records Exemptions Accountability) Committee Meeting
When: Tuesday, May 20, 2014
Time: 9 am - 1 pm
Where: John A. Cherberg Bldg., Conference Room ABC, Olympia, WA
(Agenda to be determined)
New Evidence Rule for state courts
Sunshine Committee's 2014 meeting schedule
Schedule of Review
SSB 5295 (Chapter 128, Laws of 2010)
2011-2012: SB 5049
Sunshine Committee Reports to the Legislature:
Members of the Committee include:
Honorable Michael Schwab (ret), Yakima County Superior Court Judge (Chair)
Nicholas Brown, Office of the Governor
Nancy Krier, Attorney General's Office
Senator Maralyn Chase
Senator Pam Roach
Representative Jeff Holy
Representative Lynn Kessler (ret) (1st Vice-Chair)
Rowland Thompson, Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington
Ramsey Ramerman, Assistant City Attorney, City of Everett
David Zeeck, The News Tribune
Peter Holmes, Seattle City Attorney
Representative Larry Springer
Full Committee roster
Sunshine Committee bylaws
The Code Reviser's Office has provided a list of public disclosure exemptions contained in the Revised Code of Washington. The information was provided in response to the directive in Section 2(7)(a), chapter 198, Laws of 2007 (Substitute Senate Bill No. 5435).
Add yourself to the Sunshine Committee mailing list for the latest news from the committee. Just make sure to select "SUNSHINE" on the subscriptions page. You can also sign up to receive additional information from the Attorney General's Office such as News Releases and other AGO newsletters.