The Carolina Public Press has this piece up boiling down the ongoing issues media outlets in the state have with a new policy under the McCrory administration to charge “special services charges” for public records requests that take more than a half-hour for staff to compile.
From Carolina Public Press, a non-profit news organization based in Western North Carolina:
In the growing dispute over how much state and local government agencies should charge for providing public records, Gov. Pat McCrory‘s top attorney cited Asheville and Charlotte’s policies to justify a rise in fees. But according to staffers in both cities who handle records requests, the two municipalities rarely, if ever, levy extra charges.
At issue is how to interpret part of North Carolina’s public records law, which generally asserts that public records should be available for free or for the costs of duplicating them.
An exception in the law has sparked a debate between N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper, a Democrat who is expected to run for governor in 2016, and McCrory, a Republican.