The Indiana Publisher

November, 2014

Hoosier State Press Association - The Indiana Publisher

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First-hand accounts The HSPA Foundation welcomes Ferguson, Mo., photographers Whitney Curtis, left, and her husband, Jeff Roberson, to the Newsroom Seminar. Curtis is a freelance photographer who covered the city's protests primarily for The New York Times. Roberson is an Associated Press photographer based in St. Louis. Publisher The Indiana Volume 79, Issue 11 • November 13, 2014 Published on second Thursday monthly Notices worth cost to Hoosiers HSPA in talks with state officials HSPA survey shows taxpayers willing to pay for transparency H oosiers support public notice ads, and they want to see them in their local newspapers. That was the clear message found in the results of a recent American Opinion Research survey of Hoosier attitudes on the publication of public notices. When asked if they support the publication of public notices as a way to inform the public of government actions, 85 percent of respondents said yes. That's a greater percentage than those who said they have read or seen public notice adver- tising in a newspaper (61 percent). "That indicates that even people who don't read notices regularly still support the con- cept because they trust their neighbor or co-worker will see a notice of interest and let them know about it," said Steve Key, executive director and general counsel for the Hoosier State Press Association. Key encourages publishers to discuss results of the survey with local legislators, particular- ly those who believe government website posting is the future of "transparency." "It's not a future envisioned by most Hoosiers," he said. The HSPA board of directors commissioned the survey from Princeton, N.J.-based American Opinion Research, which sur- veyed 1,000 Hoosiers about public notices, newspaper read- ership and sources of election information. Key recruited four state H SPA's legislative agenda continues to grow as the January start to the 2015 Indiana General Assembly session approaches. The association's top pri- ority is a reversal of a legis- lative decision to end the publication of local govern- ment units' proposed bud- gets and notice of the pub- lic's opportunity to speak on budgets. This fall's publication of budget notices was the last unless the legislature reverses its course. State Rep. Dan Leonard, R-Huntington, authored the bill (H.E.A. 1266) to erase this transparency requirement. Leonard car- ried the bill at the request of the state Department of Local Government Finance. Steve Key, HSPA's execu- tive director and general counsel, believes Depart- ment of Local Government Finance bureaucrats were motivated to eliminate the publication in part because they didn't want to contin- ue to be thrust into the role of bad guy, denying budget requests due to failure to properly publish the notice of budget hearing. Micah Vincent, then com- missioner of the Depart- ment of Local Government Finance, said he believes more people will see the budget information if it's posted on the state agency's website. That perception isn't sup- ported by the results of a survey conducted by Amer- ican Opinion research this year, which clearly shows that Hoosiers support the publication of public notices See NOTICES, Page 5 See BUDGET, Page 5 Foundation Front: Member newspapers can run a free 15-part series on Indiana history to mark the state's bicentennial in 2016. Page 3 Postal Update: Tap into safeguards and tips from the National Newspaper Association to maximize postal delivery of print products. Page 5 Legal Q&A: Sub-groups of governing bodies' sub-committees can have closed meetings. Page 6 Key Points: 'It's always been that way' isn't an excuse for avoiding required transparency in government. Page 8 INSIDE u Newsroom Seminar Dec. 6, 2014 u Indianapolis & Awards Luncheon REGISTER AT Great training! u Newspaper awards! Covering Ferguson in pictures Newsroom Seminar & Awards Luncheon What: Workshops on writing, photography and more, plus the awards luncheon When: Saturday, Dec. 6, 2014 Where: Indianapolis Marriott North Cost: $65 if regis- tered by Nov. 14 (payment may fol- low); registration fee increases after that date Registration: Go to www.HSPA events to register online, or return the form news- rooms received by mail. Seminar sched- ule and speaker information: Download a bro- chure at www. HSPAfoundation. org/events or request one by sending an email to Shawn Goldsby at sgoldsby@ Information: (317) 803-4772 or sgoldsby@ F rom learning which public records you can access to hearing first-hand experi- ences of covering the Ferguson, Mo., protests, this year's Newsroom Seminar promises something for everyone. Investigative reporters, photographers, feature writers and multimedia pros will find sessions appropriate for their niche Saturday, Dec. 6 at the Indianapolis Marriott North. "We tried to cover the bases in this year's pro- gramming to offer a wide variety of opportuni- ties to help attendees grow professionally," said Jo Ann Spieth-Saylor, chairwoman of the HSPA Foundation Newsroom Seminar Committee and editor of The Corydon Democrat. The Better Newspaper Contest awards lun- cheon will follow the seminar. Two photojournalists from St. Louis, Mo., will share their experiences while covering a sensi- tive event that quickly became national news. Unrest and protests in Ferguson, Mo., followed the fatal shooting of an unarmed 18-year-old black man by a white police officer in August. Whitney Curtis, a freelance photographer who covered the situation primarily for The New York Times; and her husband, Jeff Roberson, a staff photographer for The Associated Press Register by Nov. 21 to hear from photogs at protests, other top-notch speakers See SEMINAR, Page 8 Legislative agenda: Budget publication requirements NEWSROOM SEMINAR Full results Publishers received full survey details via email. For a resend or a hard copy, contact HSPA's Steve Key at (317) 803-4772.

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