Pennsylvania Gov. lets bill on records access during disasters become law

Pennsylvania

PHILADELPHIA, PA – NOVEMBER 19: Governor of Pennsylvania Tom Wolf speaks on stage during Pennsylvania Conference For Women at Pennsylvania Convention Center on November 19, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Marla Aufmuth/Getty Images for Pennsylvania Conference for Women)

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania’s governor says a bill that requires state government agencies to continue to process public records requests during disasters is flawed, but he’s letting it become law without his signature.

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf said late Sunday he will neither sign nor veto the bill, which passed the Legislature unanimously.  The bill says agencies may only deny records requests during fires, floods or other disasters, under the provisions that are laid out in the state Right-to-Know Law.

“While I am still very concerned about the ill-conceived and poorly drafted legislation as it pertains to protections for critical security and infrastructure during an emergency, I am going to err on the side of transparency, as I have done throughout my term, and let this bill become law,” Wolf said in a statement.

The bill also says governors can’t simply tell agencies to ignore requests during disaster emergencies. 

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