Government at every level has a responsibility to the people to be as transparent as possible. This includes your local government in Florida. While government officials may be willing to share information, there is a set of laws in the state that were created to guarantee that government officials share information with the public. These laws help to keep things open and honest when it comes to information about what the government is doing.

The Florida Sunshine Laws, according to the National Freedom of Information Coalition, came about in 1995. They make sure that you have access to government public records. This includes all types of documents and other forms of documentation, such as videos. It includes almost everything involved in conducting official business except those things excluded by other laws. There are actually over 600 exemptions, which can make the laws confusing for both government officials and the general public.

The laws also set some guidelines for getting the public records. They allow you to request records at any time without having to give your reason for wanting them. However, they also do not state how long the government body has to get the records to you. So, do understand it is not immediate access to information in most cases.

It is important for government agencies to make sure they follow the Sunshine Laws and provide the public with requested records. At the same time, the public should use these laws in a responsible way. This information is for education and is not legal advice.