This week in public records: Ohio – New York – North Carolina – Pennsylvania – Arizona

The Ohio Office of Homeland Security, which licenses security guards, is having trouble keeping an accurate count of licensees since a recent requirement went into effect that employers register each new security guard hire. [State system doesn’t allow exact accounting of security guards, CantonRep.com, May 29, 2007.]

The state estimates about 21,000 individuals holding security guard licenses but says that number could be inflated by as much as 3,000 since employees are registered each time they go to work for a new company, meaning some could be registered multiple times.

Meanwhile, changes in access to public records in Ohio may make it difficult for even law enforcement to do background checks. Recently passed legislation shields personal information in public records on some government employees and their family members.

The New York Drug Dealer Registry Act, recently introduced legislation, would require drug dealers with felony convictions to register upon release from prison.

The North Carolina Court of Appeal ruled against a newspaper that sought clemency appeal applications under the state public records law. [North Carolina Appeals Court Holds That Public Records Act Does Not Apply to Clemency Applications, Media Law Prof, June 7, 2007]

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court agrees with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that juror names are releasable under the state public records act. The newspaper was rebuffed in its request for juror addresses. [Names of criminal trial jurors are public, RCFP, June 5, 2007]

The Arizona Court of Appeal agreed with Phoenix Newspaper, Inc. that a claim for damages made against a school district is a public record, even in the case of a rape of a minor. [Ruling: Rape victim’s compensation claim public record, Arizona Republic, June 12, 2007]

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