San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas
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September 18th, 2008
Open records request for the Attendance Zone Committee

The following was sent to us here at Newstreamz, in response to a press release we ran earlier this month from the SMCISD.  You can read that here.

This is an open records request for information regarding the Attendance Zone Committee (AZC) and the 1st Draft of the Committees’ Recommendation:

1. A list of all members of the AZC. How were they appointed and specifically who appointed each member. Designate officers (if applicable) of the committee, and provide the member attendance records for each meeting.

2. Minutes of all meetings of the AZC to date.

3. A copy of the draft plan. When will the plan be presented to the school board?

4. When has the community had an opportunity to participate and give public input to date? Will there be an opportunity to comment before the draft goes to the school board for consideration?

5. A map of the current attendance zones and the political (school board district) boundaries.

6. How many busses currently run in our district daily? How many busses will run under the draft plan? What are the projected bus routes under the draft plan. What does the district currently spend on diesel/gasoline annually?

Please let me know when I can expect this information electronically.
Thanks so much,
Chris North

Chris North, Secretary/Treasurer
San Marcos Council of Neighborhood Associations

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0 thoughts on “Open records request for the Attendance Zone Committee

  1. Chris,
    FYI, your open records request is mostly not valid. Per the Texas Public Information Act {Open Records} you can NOT ask questions or they don’t have to respond. In other words, they don’t have to “create” documents for you which is what asking a question would do.
    Suggest you rewrite your request asking for specific documents. Example: Instead of “How many buses run daily?” you should say, “please send any document that shows the number of buses running daily”.
    And keep your request narrow because they can charge you if the amount of documents exceeds certain amounts, unless you have unlimited money and want to spend it.
    You can verify what I’m saying by going to the Texas Attorney General’s website and download the “Texas Public Information Act Handbook” which cites the law and examples.
    Don’t get the wrong idea, I am not part of either your group or the school district, just someone who is aware of how this particular works and trying to clarify it for you. Perhaps Newstreamz reporters will also get a copy of the handbook and use it in articles such as yours before publishing, thus providing real community service.
    Or, you can just wait and get the response from the AG’s office when the district forwards request to them and they rule 45 days later and then you start all over.
    But following the law in the first place is much faster for you to get the info.

  2. Wow- I’m doing it wrong!
    Thanks, Dan for your thoughtful and knowledgeable “heads-up”. It occurs to me that in my 12 years of involvement in our local political process, I’ve never had to submit an official Open Records Request. I’ve always been able to obtain information from the City or County by simply asking. This may illustrate the problem I perceive with the District’s process for the attendance zone realignment plan and the non-inclusive nature of the AZC.(I’ve not received any of the information requested as of yet.) But I have to believe that the District will comply with my request.(I mean, we’re all on the same side, right…?)
    I have a meeting on Monday with the Superintendent. Want to ride shotgun?

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