The Indiana Publisher

February 2017

Hoosier State Press Association - The Indiana Publisher

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I was sitting in a restaurant waiting for a former colleague to join me for dinner. I couldn't help but overhear a conversation from the table next to me. It was an older gentleman speak- ing with a teenage boy. I thought it was a grandfather and grandson having dinner, but I real- ized their conversation was part of a formal mentoring program. The boy was truly trying to improve his life, and thankfully he was involved in a process that helped him achieve that goal. Does your sales team have a process to help with personal and professional goal achievement? Finding sales talent is extremely difficult. Sometimes, you have to hire someone with the personality and character traits that will hope- fully translate to a quality sales person, then teach them how to be a superstar sales person. Too many sales organizations are hiring, but doing very little to enrich and improve the people that represent their company. There is no excuse for sales managers and companies not offering training. Financial ideas: Use annual financial reports to create interesting stories. Page 4 Moving to KY: A southern Indiana newspaper moves printing operations to Louisville. Page 4 Hey, can they do that? Steve Key answers your legal questions. Page 3 INSIDE Publisher The Indiana Volume 82, Issue 2 • February 9, 2017 Published on second Thursday monthly Low-budget sales training options A mong the more than 1,600 bills filed with the 2017 General Assembly, The Hoosier State Press Association (HSPA) is follow- ing a number that would either impact the cost of obtaining records or what records would be available electronically. Chief among those is H.B. 1523, authored by Rep. Kathy Richardson, R-Noblesville. This bill is the product of work started almost five years ago by HSPA and Speaker of the House Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis. The bill addresses two declared needs in the Access to Public Records Act (APRA): government official's desire to address the costs of meet- ing requests for voluminous amounts of records, and the public's desire to obtain elec- tronic records from the govern- ment. H.B. 1523 resurrects language that was approved by both the House and Senate in 2015, but was vetoed by then-Gov. Mike Pence. Pence objected to the cre- ation of a search fee as a barrier to public access. Steve Key, executive director and general counsel for HSPA, understands the concern but believes that taken as a whole, the public will benefit more from the ability to gain elec- tronic copies of public records than it will find a search fee an impediment. "The search fee may lead requesters to use a rifle versus shotgun approach to seek informa- tion, but focused requests benefit everyone," Key said. "It doesn't make sense for a requester to seek 1,000 pages of documents that only contain 10 of what he or she desires." Depending on the size of records request, 27 states have a search fee trigger, as does the fed- eral Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). H.B. 1523 borrows the two-hour threshold from the federal FOIA law. A search fee would only start to run after the first two hours of free search. The bill also caps any fee at $20 an hour to avoid the use of an attorney's hourly rate by a government unit looking to discourage records requests. The search fee only covers the search for the records, not a lawyer's time to determine which records the agency can deny or redact under the APRA. "I believe the limits imposed on a search fee strikes the proper balance in allowing a public agency to recoup search costs on voluminous requests while not serving as a chilling factor in the public's ability to learn what its government is doing," Key said. The bill was approved Tuesday by the House Government and Regulatory Reform Committee, chaired by Rep. Kevin Mahan, R-Hartford City, with a 7-1 vote. Rep. Robin Shackleford, D-Indianapolis, was the dissent- ing vote because she believes the $20 cap on the search fee should be a lower amount. HSPA is checking with Gov. Eric Holcomb's office to see if there are any objections to the bill's language. There are several bills that touch upon the MPH or "manage- ment and performance hub." The state's goal is to build a website where public officials or the public can access a vast array of Cost & availability of records at issue House bill 1523 creates search fee, public can obtain electronic copies By Pete Van Baalen Fort Wayne Newspapers See Low-budget, Page 3 See Other bills, Page 2 T he Hoosier State Press Association (HSPA) is supporting the efforts of young journalists to secure student press freedom rights in H.B. 1130, authored by Rep. Ed Clere, R-New Albany. The bill is supported by both the Indiana High School Press Association and Indiana Collegiate Press Association. Five student journalists met with House Education Committee chair Rep. Bob Behning, R-Indianapolis, to explain what the bill would do. HSPA believes that Rep. Behning will give H.B. 1130 a hearing this month. HSPA testified against S.B. 285, authored by Sen. Jim Tomes, R-Wadesville, on First Amendment grounds. Sen. Tomes wants to be sure illegal protests do not impede roadways. HSPA executive director and gen- eral counsel Steve Key argued that the bill was unnecessary and would serve as encouragement for public officials who wanted to clamp down on the public's right to dissent. S.B. 285 was heard in the Senate Local Government Committee chaired by Sen. Jim Buck, R-Kokomo. Sen. Buck acknowledged the presence of many who opposed the bill and the fact there were none signed up in support. Sen. Buck held Student press freedom, other bills involve press association Pete Van Baalen See Records, Page 2

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