FOIA UPDATE: Binding Opinions and Pre-Approval Letters Issued by the Public Access Counselor

Mar 17, 2011

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It has been over one (1) year since the amended Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) took effect. While some of the initial questions and concerns about amended FOIA have been answered, many more have and continue to be raised. These questions and concerns are beginning to be addressed by the Public Access Counselor (“PAC”) and the Illinois legislature.[1] This In Brief will provide you with a summary of the binding opinions and pre-approval letters issued by the PAC to date.

[1] As you may recall, the 96th General Assembly enacted three (3) laws which impacted FOIA (one of which prohibits the disclosure of all performance evaluations in response to a FOIA request. The recently convened 97th General Assembly has already introduced two (2) bills which would amend existing FOIA (House Bill 1715 and Senate Bill 2203).  We are tracking these bills and will update you immediately if they are signed into law.