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FAC Forces Disclosure of More Documents From CA Supreme Court ‘Secret Docket’

Even more secret records related to former California Gov. Jerry Brown’s request to pardon former state Sen. Rod Wright became public yesterday—the result of an ongoing effort by the First Amendment Coalition (FAC) to shine light on the decades-old California Supreme Court practice of automatically sealing documents related to executive clemency. The once-sealed records released …

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FAC Joins Letter to Sacramento Police Over Treatment of Journalists at Protest

The First Amendment Coalition (FAC) today joined the Committee to Protect Journalists and other press freedom organizations in sending a letter to the Sacramento police department to request a meeting over the treatment of journalist at a recent protest. You can read the full letter below: Chief Daniel Hahn Sacramento Police Department 5770 Freeport Blvd., Suite …

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California AG Xavier Becerra and the Thick Blue Wall of Police Secrecy

By David Snyder California Attorney General Xavier Becerra appears to believe there are two sets of rules about government transparency—one for his office, and another for everyone else.   Back in 2017, when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) refused to disclose public records about EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s potential ethical conflicts, Becerra promptly sued under …

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FAC Sues CA Attorney General to Force Disclosure of Police Misconduct Files

The First Amendment Coalition (FAC) filed suit today against California Attorney General Xavier Becerra for failing to comply with the state’s new, landmark police transparency law. The suit, filed in San Francisco Superior Court, seeks the release of records regarding serious police misconduct—records that all state and local agencies are now required to disclose under Senate Bill …

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FAC, Media Coalition Notch Important Victory in Growing Police Transparency Fight

A coalition of media groups led by the First Amendment Coalition has prevailed in the latest battle in the expanding legal fight over California’s landmark police transparency bill, Senate Bill 1421. On Friday, Judge Charles Treat of the Contra Costa County Superior Court denied a preliminary injunction sought by police unions that would have barred …

Read moreFAC, Media Coalition Notch Important Victory in Growing Police Transparency Fight

FAC, Media Coalition Fight New Effort to Weaken CA Police Transparency Law

A coalition of media groups led by the First Amendment Coalition (FAC) today filed court papers challenging yet another attempt by a police union to undermine a new, landmark police transparency law in California—this time in Los Angeles County. The law (SB 1421), which went into effect on Jan. 1, requires a slew of formerly …

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FAC Forces Disclosure of CA Gov. Brown’s Request to Pardon Former State Sen. Wright

Nearly 300 pages of previously secret documents became public yesterday after the First Amendment Coalition (FAC) filed a motion to unseal records regarding Gov. Jerry Brown’s effort to pardon former state Sen. Rod Wright. The documents—some still heavily redacted—had been originally filed under seal as part of a flawed, longstanding practice in which all papers filed …

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Victory for Transparency: CA Supreme Court Rejects Police Union Effort to Gut Landmark Police Transparency Law

In a significant victory for government transparency and accountability, the California Supreme Court today denied a police union’s last-minute effort to undermine the effectiveness of a new, landmark police transparency law, rejecting the union’s effort to make the law (SB 1421) apply only to records created after January 1, 2019. The First Amendment Coalition (FAC) …

Read moreVictory for Transparency: CA Supreme Court Rejects Police Union Effort to Gut Landmark Police Transparency Law

FAC, Media Coalition Oppose Last-Ditch Effort to Gut Landmark Police Transparency Law

A coalition of media groups led by the First Amendment Coalition (FAC) today filed briefing in the California Supreme Court to oppose a police union’s effort to undermine the effectiveness of a new, landmark police transparency law. The law requires a wide range of records relating to police misconduct to be available to the public—a …

Read moreFAC, Media Coalition Oppose Last-Ditch Effort to Gut Landmark Police Transparency Law

ProPublica Staffers Win 2018 FAC Award for “Trump Town” Investigative Series

The First Amendment Coalition is proud to announce the recipient of its 2018 Free Speech & Open Government Award is the nonprofit newsroom ProPublica, selected for its extensive use of public records to increase transparency around political appointees at the highest levels of government. This year’s award goes to ProPublica staffers Derek Kravitz, Al Shaw, …

Read moreProPublica Staffers Win 2018 FAC Award for “Trump Town” Investigative Series