Public Records Mess $16,610.00 And
|Mayor Doyle Arp's public records debacle has so far
cost the county tax payers $16,610.00 in legal
fees (PDF) and with the
law suit brought by county activist, Pat Hunter still pending, those
legal fees are bound to go higher, much higher. The recipient of
those fees is the Knoxville law firm of Kramer Rayson, contributors to
Arp's campaign fund.
Shortly after taking office, and in violation of state law, Arp instituted a policy that all but prohibited the public's access to public records. The convoluted policy required the requestor to make application to the mayor before viewing any public records, and it's cost scale would have made obtaining copies cost prohibitive for most average citizens. Nearly the entire policy has since been ruled to be illegal and arbitrary by CTAS, County Technical Assistance Service.
While some records have been made available including attorney Harvey Sproul's monthly billings, Arp has refused to permit any access by anyone, including commissioners, to the Kramer Rayson monthly billings.
How many copies at 10 cents could the citizens have received for $16,610.00? 166,100.