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LWV-Hawaii Legislative Testimony

HB 110

Relating to
Freedom of Information

House Committee on Consumer Protection and Commerce (CPC) - chair: Herkes, vice chair: Yamane

Tuesday, February 1, 2011, 2:00 p.m.. Conference Room 325

Testifier: Jean Aoki, Legislative Committee, LWV of Hawaii

Click here to view HB110

The Honorable Chair Herkes, The Honorable Vice Chair Yamane, members of CPC Committee,

The League of Women Voters of Hawaii supports HB 110 which allows some pertinent information which really belongs in the public domain from being given the status of information which has significant privacy interest. The added information to (7) D – F do not infringe on one's privacy.

League is not one to take privacy interests lightly. However, we feel too much information is hidden from the public, sometimes with negative consequences. For example, in selecting someone for a leadership position, some commissions and committees will do all interviews in closed session, when much of it should be public information, and the testimony from the public would be valuable to the committee. There are matters that need to be privately discussed and only then should these be discussed in executive sessions. We feel strongly that for some positions especially, the privacy interests of the candidates are trumped by the public's right to know and to decide whether the best choices have been made.

In this particular case, inquiry into an individual's fitness to be granted or to retain a license which I suppose is to provide some service to members of the public should be public record. The public deserves that information which might affect their own decisions in looking for service providers.

We urge passage of HB 110. Thank you for the opportunity to testfy on behalf of HB 110.


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