Virginia Panel Rejects Effort To Open Records Of Regulatory Agency | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Virginia Panel Rejects Effort To Open Records Of Regulatory Agency

Play associated audio
Del. Scott Surovell, left, makes his case to the Freedom of Information Advisory Council.
Michael Pope
Del. Scott Surovell, left, makes his case to the Freedom of Information Advisory Council.

Open government advocates are pressing to open the records of the Virginia State Corporation Commission, which regulates everything from car insurance to cell phone bills.

Del. Scott Surovell (D-Fairfax) appeared before a panel of the Freedom of Information Advisory Council to make his pitch for increased transparency. During a subcommittee meeting at the General Assembly Building, he presented language for a bill that would make the State Corporation Commission subject to the Freedom of Information Act.

"Personally, I would like to make the entire SCC subject to FOIA," Surovell says. "However I don't have an interest right now in taking on a couple thousand businesses and about 50 lobbyists."

But a smaller number of businesses and lobbyists were on hand anyway to oppose the bill. Speaking on behalf of the gas utilities, Brent Archer says he didn't see any reason for the bill.

"We feel that things that are now happening proactively and informally that could be subject to FOIA would then become... there would be hesitancy a reticence among the utilities to share that information to have that kind of dialogue," Archer says.

Surovell was hoping to walk out of the meeting with a vote of approval from the subcommittee, but that didn't happen. A majority of the members voted to leave things the way they are now. Surovell says he will introduce the bill anyway when the next session begins.

NPR

Jenner: 'For All Intents And Purposes, I Am A Woman'

In an interview with Diane Sawyer on ABC's "20/20", the former gold-medal-winning Olympic decathlete described a struggle with gender identity that began in childhood.
NPR

PepsiCo Swaps Diet Drink's Aspartame For Other Artificial Sweeteners

The company says Diet Pepsi consumers are concerned about aspartame. But the Food and Drug Administration has long affirmed that the sweetener is safe in amounts commonly used by beverage companies.
NPR

Young Trafficking Victim's Story On NPR Leads To Senator's Amendment

Hearing about a young woman's struggle to wipe away her conviction on prostitution charges inspired New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen to introduce legislation to help other victims.
NPR

At The Heart Of A Watch, Tested By Time

Watchmakers have long thrived by selling timepieces that will be cherished as family heirlooms. But, if pragmatism rendered the pocket watch obsolete, what happens when watches become computers?

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.