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Arkansas bill to release some private group records fails

March 5, 2019

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — An effort to require the release of records from private groups such as universities’ nonprofit foundations has failed before an Arkansas Senate panel.

The proposal to expand the definition of public records failed Tuesday before the Senate State Agencies and Governmental Affairs Committee after it failed to get a motion. The proposal would have expanded the definition to include records of private groups with the primary purpose of providing direct support to a government agency or public entity.

The proposal would not have required the release of the groups’ donors.

Supporters of the bill said it would provide clarity about the state’s public records law and provide more transparency about private groups doing public work. Opponents have said they’re worried the bill would hurt nonprofits’ fundraising efforts.