This is a long post.
Over and over, Olympia City Council members have said they’ve received dozens of complaints from people about "pedestrian interference" downtown.
These complaints, at least the ones recorded in phone messages, written correspondence and/or e-mail or other written form, are public records and are disclosable, as are police reports and court records related to "interference".
Since The Olympian is failing in its civic responsibility to report on all sides of this issue by asking the City for specific information pertaining to the need for this ordinance, someone should. It could be one of the readers of this post.
If you choose to file a records request, please remember that these requests are a way of obtaining information to be disseminated to the public, and should not be used to beat individuals over the head in an attempt to change their minds, however tempting that might be. At their best, journalists such as yourselves are public servants who have a special duty to provide information people can use to make well-reasoned decisions.
So, were I to write a request for records pertaining to this issue, it would go something like this. The wording of the request is below, followed by some additional comments. If you are interested in pursuing this, you can take the request to City Hall, or mail or e-mail it to the City’s public records officer. Information on how to file public records requests may be found on the City’s Web site, www.ci.olympia.wa.us