Jindal's departments shield budget negotiations from public
BATON ROUGE - A public records exemption pushed by Gov. Bobby Jindal is keeping more budget documents hidden from public view, even as the state grapples with a massive $1.6 billion budget shortfall.
Executive branch agencies are claiming the exemption to hide their working papers of where and how they'd have to slash services and programs to cope with looming cuts.
Jindal backed legislation in 2009 that rewrote the governor's office public records exemption. The rewrite included a new provision that shielded for six months budget documents that provide "pre-decisional advice and recommendations to the governor" for any department headed by a gubernatorial appointee.
A dozen of Jindal's cabinet agencies claimed that exemption in response to public records requests from media seeking more details about their ongoing budget negotiations.