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Alderman can't hide records, attorney says
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An alderman who attempted to prevent information from becoming public knowledge could face legal problems if the conduct repeats itself, says Tennessee Press Association attorney Rick Hollow.“What you need to look for is a repetitive pattern,” said Hollow, a leading authority on Tennessee’s Open Records law. “If this kind of activity is repeated, you can definitely sue him.”The action concerned statements made by Alderman Ken Smith last week in excluding the Southern Standard from receiving a copy of the proposed city budget for fiscal year 2013-14 during a meeting at City Hall.In addressing board members in a meeting last Thursday night, Smith, who serves as Finance Committee chairman, stated, “The reason that I did not give (the Standard) a copy of this is because, simply, this is nothing more than a draft. This is nothing close to what the finished product will be.