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Word - Closed to the Public

"I'm afraid if darkness is allowed to cloak public contracts and public business, it could well result in paving a road to economic hell for our citizens ."

- STATE SUPREME COURT CHIEF JUSTICE NORMAN FLETCHER, REFERENCING HOUSE BILL 218 IN A MARCH 4 SPEECH.

"HB 218 would help ... attract new business and align the state of Georgia's public records laws with those of other Southeastern states. [The bill] will keep all records of an economic development agency private until the project is completed ... or terminated, at which time the records would become ... public."

- THE GEORGIA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE'S ONLINE LEGISLATIVE NEWSLETTER."

The bill pays lip service to disclosure, contending that records must be disclosed once an agency 'publicly announces' that a ... development ... has succeeded or failed. But if no such ... announcement is made, secrecy apparently continues indefinitely. This is the hallmark of secret government: 'Nothing is open until we say it is.'"

- GEORGIA FIRST AMENDMENT FOUNDATION EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR HOLLIE MANHEIMER.