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VOL. 42 | NO. 32 | Friday, August 10, 2018

While probing 538 records exemptions, Tennessee added more

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NASHVILLE (AP) — A state review has found that while Tennessee lawmakers began reviewing 500-plus public records exemptions this year, they approved more exclusions.

A report from Tennessee's Office of Open Records Counsel notes 29 changes to public records laws last legislative session, which ended in April. About 20 include exemptions.

Some protect proprietary information, including in wind energy facility permit applications, municipal food-based incubation services or applications to the public-private entrepreneurial partnership Launch Tennessee.

Others shield human trafficking victims and service providers and protect people reporting elder exploitation.

In January, legislative leaders appointed lawmakers to review 538 identified exemptions in state code. A legislative panel met Tuesday for early discussions on how to address the growth in exemptions.

The comptroller's office cited two statutory exemptions in 1957, then 89 by 1988.

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