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Subscript: FOIA office is well hidden at CPS

…Since it’s Halloween season, here is a little Trick or Treat (or for that matter, Hide and Seek). Where is the CPS FOIA office and why has Arne Duncan been hiding it from the public? Duncan never has fewer than a dozen people working on public relations and (one of our favorites) “marketing” (er, “The Office of Communications”). So why can’t a member of the public find the Public Records (Freedom of Information; whatever you want to call it) office at 125 S. Clark St. It’s not even true that every cave in the Daley labyrinth is as obscure and well-guarded.

Go to Chicago Police headquarters at 35th and Michigan and there is the Public Records section at the entrance when you walk in. Go to most suburbs and you find they are more concerned about the public’s right to know. What’s Daley (er, Duncan) hiding?

The FOIA office at CPS is one-tenth the size of the FOIA office at CPD. Chicago schools’ FOIA commitment is less than that of Maywood or Cicero. Nice touch for a city with pretenses to host the Olympics and proclaim itself “world class.” Whoops. You’re right. The next Olympics are in Beijing. In China. Land of free information. Arne Duncan and Richard M. Daley are right at home in the years of George W. Bush. But people in Chicago should get to walk in and find a well-staffed FOIA office to serve them, not a bunch of paranoid princelings and their centurions (Fifth Floor; Seventh Floor) or their smarmy spin machine (Sixth Floor)…



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