While I was away, the Arkansas Times made an FOI request for pay details of new Razorback assistant coaches.
Rebecca Morrison, who fields FOI requests for the UA-Fayetteville, refused to provide the information. She told Lindsey Millar last week:
With regard to your January 9, 2018 emailed request for public records that was forwarded to me, please be advised that the records you seek (for Craddock, Chavis and Carroll) are in active use and will not be responsive until fully executed. At that time, the records will be released.
On my return, I objected. The legal definition of “active use” relates to a specific document. It does not mean a deal has not yet been completed. I’m sure multiple copies of the tentative agreements exist and are readily available. I asked for them again.
Today, Morrison adopted a new tactic for refusal:
Please understand that releasing drafts of unsigned agreements places the university at a significant competitive disadvantage; therefore, we consider those records to be exempt pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 25-19-105(b)(9).
My response to Morrison: “that is pure horse hockey.”
But it is well-aged horse hockey from the UA. It first developed the competitive disadvantage excuse in refusing a request for information on what it had given the Walton family in return for a $300 million gift some years ago —