Why do you ask, cities?

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Because I’m interested. Because I want to know how my tax dollars are spent. Because I plan to overthrow the city government. Because I elected you and you work for me. Or, simply because it’s my right.

What is the correct answer? There are so many possibilities.

The form approved most recently by the city of Pelham but also by Columbiana, Westover and Montevallo and long ago by Alabaster calls for an answer to the question, &uot;Why?&uot;

Why do you want access to this public record? Why do you want access to your city’s budget? Why do you want access to city council minutes?


It’s an unfair question. And the only reason we can determine it’s on the form is to intimidate the one who’s requesting the public record.

We’ve noted before in this space that politicians often look around and wonder why they are not trusted by those they serve.

Here’s your answer, local politicians.

Methods of intimidation such as the question &uot;Why?&uot; on the request form make residents believe you are up to something.

You are only hurting yourselves by allowing this to continue. Will not one of our elected officials stand up and say this intimidation is wrong? We certainly have expected more from you