Norman, McAlester muni candidates pledge support for open government

Norman Mayor Cindy Rosenthal has signed FOI Oklahoma's Open Government Pledge
as she runs for re-election in the city's municipal election on March 2.

Rosenthal's opponent,
Councilman Hal Ezzell, signed the pledge in December. He was the first candidate in a 2010 election to sign the pledge.

In McAlester, a former acting city treasurer, Steve Harrison, signed the pledge as a candidate for
the City Council's Ward 2 seat. The primary election will be March 2.

By signing the pledge, each candidate promised that their respective city governments would "comply with not only the letter but also the spirit of Oklahoma's Open Meeting and Open Records laws.”

They also promised “to support at every opportunity the public policy of the State of Oklahoma that the people are vested with the inherent right to know and be fully informed about their government so that they can efficiently and intelligently exercise their inherent political power.”

FOI Oklahoma began the Open Government Pledge in spring 2008 as part of a national effort to spur public commitments to government transparency from candidates for president down to city council contests.

For the 2008 and 2009 elections, 58 candidates for local or statewide offices signed the pledge. Of those, 28 were elected.

Signers are listed on the FOI Oklahoma Web site, where the pledge form is available for download.

Joey Senat, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
OSU School of Journalism

The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the commentators and do not necessarily represent the position of FOI Oklahoma Inc., its staff, or its board of directors. Differing interpretations of open government law and policy are welcome.