Archive for the ‘Indiana’ Category
Juror names and jury questionnaires are public records and subject to disclosure even if a trial judge has made promises to the contrary. At least in North Dakota. A ruling by that state’s Supreme Court, cited by the Associated Press, rebuffed a trial court’s claim that the records in one case were sealed out of fear that the jurors could be harassed.
“We conclude those reasons, by themselves, are insufficient to rebut the presumption of openness and to warrant a blanket closure in this case…”
Court rulings may seem like a bouncing ball when it comes to privacy, public records and electronic messaging. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco has asserted that companies do not have an automatic right to access employees’ text messages if the data is stored on outside servers. Read more about this decision and the significance for privacy and data management. Some other news stories on email access and public records can be found at WikiFOIA.
Maybe it’s a trend in the refinement of the sex offender databases and regulation of where registered sex offenders can live.Tennessee has joined Indiana (see this court ruling on the Indiana law), Missouri, Kentucky and Alaska requiring registered sex offenders submit their email addresses, which are being added to those state online databases. States can’t keep track of the physical location of registrants so the email address disclosure may not be of much value to public safety.
The online versions of mainstream newspapers continue to distinguish themselves by collecting public records, then making them searchable in a database. I mentioned two sites in a posting last week – DataUniverse (New Jersey) and DataCentral (Iowa). The Boston Herald is doing its part to sunshine the workings of the Massachusetts state government in a database identified as the 2007 State Employee Payroll. This database is unique in collecting public records from the government and making them easily accessible to the public, in a form not otherwise available. Search by partial last name or agency, or combine the two. A search identifies the department, the employee’s name, the job description, weekly hours and annual rate of pay. [Via Media Nation]
The Tennessee Leaf-Chronicle isn’t giving us a unique database but it is linking to some of the public records online databases at the government Web sites.
The Honolulu Advertiser’s Boating Safety Searchable Database is drawn from Coast Guard accident reports. Not all states are included and the site has few details on the extent of the data and the compiling process. Some document images of accident reports are here. The newspaper also has links to selective public records databases hosted at government sites.
Search high school graduates, government salaried employees and high school athletes for selective counties and municipalities in Kentucky and Indiana, at the Courier-Journal DataCenter. Plot property transfers in Jefferson County, Kentucky on a map. Search by street or zip code and sort by date, address or sales price.
Death Notices, building permits and smoking complaints are among the databases collected at this Cincinnati, Ohio paper.
Search Indiana state employee salaries by name and the Indiana Attorney General consumer litigation by company name. Indiana State Police speeding violations are searchable by name or location for the past 6 months.
The Des Moines Register has a variety of types of personal information databases that it has assembled from Iowa state government records. Court fines and business executive salaries are available statewide. Vital records indexes, property transfers, high school graduates and bankruptcies for Polk County can be searched by partial name. Records are indexed for 2007 only.
This week in public records: California – Washington – Missouri – Indiana – Wisconsin – Pennsylvania
A few months ago I wrote about the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control maintains License Query System. An added feature to the ABC site is daily, weekly and annual reports of new licenses, license status changes and actions taken against licenses including, revocations, suspensions, fines, and issuance or denial of licenses. The database of reports cannot be searched at the site. Search the archived reports from September 16, 2006 to the present by using this advanced search at Google. Replace “Safeway” with your company name, address or other key words.
Reporters and anyone compiling statistical data will be able to make use of the reports menu at the ABC site. Query the reports by location and license type to get a detail of all that meet that criteria. For example, find all the caterer licensees in Azusa.
Washington State law now bans employer access to the credit reports of employees or potential employees unless such information is substantially related to the individual’s current or potential job responsibilities. An exception is made if the employer has a “reasonable cause to believe” that the employee “has engaged in specific activity that constitutes a violation of law.”
Missouri private investigators are poised to receive the stamp of legitimacy with the establishment of the Board of Private Investigator Examiners, which will license and regulate private investigators. The bill is awaiting the governor’s signature, which is expected this summer. The Missouri Association of Private Investigators has worked diligently to secure state level licensing and soon they’ll be able to join the majority of states that license PIs.
New regulations for Indiana private investigators will go into effect July 1, including the replacement of the term “private detective” with “private investigator”.
The Wisconsin Supreme Court will decide whether property assessment databases created on behalf of municipalities by private companies are a public records.
Legislation introduced in Pennsylvania would make it a crime to obtain, sell or receive phone records of state residents without their authorization.
The Department of Education Web sites for Alaska, Indiana, Louisiana, Nebraska, New York, Tennessee and West Virginia are a few that have a searchable database of certified public school teachers. These databases can mostly be searched by partial name, a convenient tool to obtain a teacher’s full name, verify her certification or how long she’s been teaching. States that don’t have educator certifications online – such as Mississippi – but whose teachers are nationally certified are in the database of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. Search by state, city, district or name.
If you want to identify states that have online teacher certification records go to the specific state Department of Education Web site. Not everything can be found in a search engine! As an additional measure, you can formulate a Google query. One way you might look for the Massachusetts teacher licensing:
Massachusetts “teacher certification ” “department of education” -site:.com
Some states may refer to this as an “educator certification”.
South Carolina requires the last 5 digits of the teacher’s Social Security number to verify a credential – making the site unusable for the general public. California teacher lookup is at the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing site, which won’t come up if you’re using the phrase “teacher certification”.
The California Department of Labor Standards Enforcement has 5 different personal information databases, including a studio teachers certification database. Search other State Labor Department Web sites.
I previously wrote about some school finder resources and other state educator certification lookups.
Madera County, California real property parcel maps can be searched by address and viewed online.
The Sacramento County, California probate court is adding online document images to its Web site. Only cases filed after February 5, 2007 are currently included.
The recent expansion of the role of Arizona Ombudsman-Citizens’ Aide Office will provide a complaint center for addressing public records access violations.
The Indiana Attorney General has an online, searchable database of the legal actions they have initiated against violators of Indiana’s consumer protection laws. Search by county and/or year or view a list by defendant’s name, with links to the public filings and court orders.
The Pasco County, Florida Sheriff has added many new online tools to its Web site: Active calls log, Dispatch log, Subdivision activity log, Inmates in jail, and Outstanding warrants.
A federal bill to establish a nationwide drug dealers registry has been referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary. HR 304, quaintly entitled, Clean Town Act of 2007, if enacted, would set forth “guidelines and incentives for States to establish criminal drug dealer registries and to require the Attorney General to establish a national criminal drug dealer registry and notification program…” From the point of view of a private investigator this would be another research tool, but for the criminally charged it’s another nudge toward a public national criminal offender database.
Other introduced federal legislation would expand on the recently enacted Telephone Records and Privacy Act of 2006. S.92, Protecting Consumer Phone Records Act would make it unlawful to “acquire or use the customer proprietary network information of another person without that person’s affirmative written consent…”
Continuing on the consumer privacy theme Senator Feinstein has submitted two bills related to the release of personal information. S. 238, concerns the misuse of Social Security numbers; S. 239 would “require Federal agencies, and persons engaged in interstate commerce, in possession of data containing sensitive personally identifiable information, to disclose any breach of such information.” Text is not yet available for either measure.
The Texas legislature is entertaining a number of bills that could impact private investigators. SB 123 would block release of certain personal information on minors; SB 48 would redact social security numbers from county public records; HB 73 prohibits acquisition of telephone records without the subscriber’s permission; HB 87 is similar to a bill private investigators and the motion picture industry defeated in California that would have prevented anyone from acquiring personal information in a business record.
Indiana House Bill 1046 will prohibit “a person from transmitting false or misleading caller ID information through a caller ID service.”