King County in Washington has the same problem that we have here in San Diego County: many public entities simply ignore public records requests.
The Seattle Times published the following story on August 31, 2005.
"We can only hope that last week's nearly $300,000 judgment against King County for years of flouting a legitimate public-records request will make an impression on public agencies.
"Armen Yousoufian…acting independently…was able to wrest public documents from an agency reluctant to give them over…
"Last week, Judge Michael Hayden boosted the fine from $5 to $15 a day…
"In 2001, Learned ruled "the county was negligent ... at every step of the way, and this negligence amounted to a lack of good faith." The appeals court ratcheted up its criticism, characterizing the failure to disclose public documents as "gross negligence."
"There is nothing for the county to be proud about here. A better, more reassuring response would have been:
"We screwed up. Big time. We're sorry. We won't ever do it again.""