Texas Watchdog offers training and consultation on getting public records

Texas Watchdog's team has gathered a passel of public records and made them available at www.texaswatchdog.org. Recent finds include public schedules for high-profile politicians; e-mails between Mayor Bill White and a downtown developer; and ethics forms for state lawmakers.

But such records aren't just for reporters. You, your friends and neighbors may also access them, view them, make copies, and even post them to the Web under the Texas Public Information Act. And the possibilities are only limited by what the government keeps, though there are certain privacy-related exceptions in the law.

Public records could come in handy when you're trying to select your child's school, figure out who to vote for in the local election, or even jumpstart a new blog or community site.

Texas Watchdog offers consultation and training on public records. We can talk with you by phone at 713-980-9777 or e-mail at news@texaswatchdog.org. (Services are free for folks in Texas and underwritten by Texas Watchdog's supporters.)

We are also available to come to your civic group meeting, your blogger gathering, or activist group, if you feel training in public records would help advance your cause. Texas Watchdog is nonprofit and nonpartisan, and our services are available to anyone regardless of political affiliation.