Bill to allow charges for public records searches in Tennessee fails

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A bill seeking to allow government agencies to charge for public records searches has failed in the House.

Rep. Steve McDaniel announced Wednesday that he was taking the measure off notice for the year. The Parker’s Crossroads Republican said he has asked the Comptroller’s Office of Open Records Counsel and the 14-member Advisory Committee on Open Government to hold hearings on the proposal and to make recommendations by next year’s session.

Current law allows charges for copies but not for the time spent collecting and redacting documents.

A legislative analysis of the proposal said most requests are completed in the first hour, but a fiscal projection for a 2011 version of the bill estimated local governments would collect about $1.6 million in fees under the change.

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