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Utah's Right to Know
Donald Meyers
Donald W. Meyers writes about open-government issues for The Salt Lake Tribune. He is also the site manager of utahsright.com, the Tribune's online database of public records. He is also a member of the Society of Professional Journalists' National Freedom of Information Committee and sits on the board of directors of the Utah Foundation for Open Government.

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Records Committee to hear from another inmate seeking records

Another Utah State Prison inmate is seeking the state’s help to get records.

Robert Baker is appealing the Utah Department of Corrections’ denial of his request for the department’s medical operations manual. The State Records Committee will hear his appeal tomorrow morning.

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The department recently instituted a policy of only waiving fees for the first 100 pages of documents inmates request under the Government Records Access and Management Act. Inmates are required to pay fees for requests that exceed that amount.

Corrections officials say the change is needed to deal with inmates who have made a "hobby" out of requesting public documents.

In November, the records committee ruled that the department did not have to waive fees for inmates, but said it had to provide inmates with better access to records. GRAMA allows people to inspect records at no charge.

The committee will also hear an appeal from Salt Lake City Weekly reporter Stephen Dark, who is seeking a performance audit and email from the Department of Human Services.

The meeting starts at 9:30 a.m. in the Courtyard Meeting Room of the Utah State Archives, 346 S. Rio Grande St.

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