Candidate for Cleveland County sheriff signs Open Government Pledge
The security manager for a technology company promises that if he is elected Cleveland County sheriff, the office will provide more government transparency than required by state law.
“True transparency is achieved through going above and beyond when the citizens want answers,” Kevin Hammond states on his campaign website. “The bare minimum according to law should not be our standard.”
Hammond, a Democrat, also is the first sheriff’s candidate to sign FOI Oklahoma’s Open Government Pledge since it began in 2008.
In doing so, he pledged to comply with the letter and spirit of the Open Records Act. He also promised “to support at every opportunity” the state’s public policy 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.”
Hammond faces incumbent Todd Gibson in the general election on Tuesday. Cleveland County commissioners appointed Gibson as interim sheriff in October 2017.
The previous sheriff, Joe Lester, resigned abruptly after the release of a state audit that found widespread financial mismanagement in the office. A state audit following his resignation found additional problems, including missing equipment.
Hammond is security manager for Dell Technologies in Oklahoma City, according to his LinkedIn profile. He was a police officer for Rose State College and Oklahoma City Community College.
FOI Oklahoma invites all candidates for state, local and legislative seats to sign the pledge on FOI Oklahoma’s website, where a list of signers also can be found.
Since FOI Oklahoma began the pledge in 2008, 186 candidates have signed — with 95, or 51 percent —being elected at least once. FOI Oklahoma began the Open Government Pledge as part of a national effort to spur public commitments to government transparency from candidates for president down to city council contests.
Joey Senat, Ph.D.
OSU School of Media & Strategic Communications
The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the commentators and do not necessarily represent the position of FOI Oklahoma Inc., its staff, its board of directors or the commentator’s employer. Differing interpretations of open government law and policy are welcome.