(AP) — Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders signed a law Thursday restricting release of her travel and security records after the Legislature wrapped up a special session marked by a fight to more broadly scale back the state Freedom of Information Act.
Proposed changes to the 1967 law protecting the public’s access to government records were among several items Sanders had placed on the agenda for a session that met this week.
Sanders and Republicans in the Legislature had initially pushed for more widespread exemptions to the open-records law, but backed off after facing growing criticism that it would erode government transparency.
But it still faces criticism that it will keep the public in the dark about how taxpayer dollars are being spent.
Sanders sought the security exemptions as the State Police was sued by an attorney and blogger who accused the agency of illegally withholding records about the governor’s travel and security.
Supporters of the bill said the governor’s higher profile has raised the security risk she and her family faces.
Sanders left open the possibility of later seeking the other changes, which she has said is needed to improve government efficiency. »