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WITHHOLDING OF WEYERHAEUSER LEASE RECORDS
PRESS RELEASE OF FILING TO SUPREME COURT
June 2, 2006
Today the League of Women Voters of Thurston County and Walter R. Jorgensen filed a notice of appeal directly to the state Supreme Court in their public disclosure case against the Port of Olympia.
"While we have so far received many documents the Port attempted to keep secret, the trial court has allowed the Port to keep from public inspection vital financial aspects of the Weyerhaeuser lease," said Jorgensen, a former Tumwater city council member. "The Port has released only projected revenues, not expenses and capital costs. We think the taxpayers of Thurston County have a right to know whether this deal will be profitable."
League of Women Voters of Thurston County President E. L. Johnson said, "The League firmly supports the public's right to know how its elected officials are living up to their responsibilities. The Public Records Act says plainly: 'The people of this state do not yield their sovereignty to the agencies that serve them. The people, in delegating authority, do not give their public servants the right to decide what is good for the people to know and what is not good for them to know.'"
"You have to ask yourself what the Port is trying to hide," said Bernie Friedman, attorney for Jorgensen and the League. "Publicly-traded private companies have to reveal more about their finances under federal laws than the Port of Olympia is willing to tell the taxpayers about its deals."
Allied Daily Newspapers and the League of Women Voters of Washington State have indicated they will join the appeal as friends of the court.
- Eve L. Johnson (360) 754-1455 - firstname.lastname@example.org
- Walter R. Jorgensen (360) 867-0138 - email@example.com
- Bernie Friedman (360) 709-9146 - BernieFried2004@yahoo.com