Watchdogs Ask Court To Open Alliance Records

UNION COUNTY – Last month, the Union County Watchdog Association filed a lawsuit to obtain records from the Union County Alliance Board of Directors under the Open Public Records Act (OPRA.)

The Union County Alliance is classified as a 501-C4 independent non-profit organization, not a government organization. However, Tina Renna, the president of the Watchdog Association, cites a precedent that determined that the League of Municipalities – a non-profit that derived a significant portion of its funding from taxpayer dollars – was a public agency subject to OPRA.

Earlier this year, Union County awarded a contract worth more than $300,000 to the Union County Alliance to produce two newspapers and perform other services. Renna said that she filed an OPRA request for bills and receipts related to the production of the Union County Directions Newsletter and meeting minutes for the Union County Alliance Board of Directors, but the agency failed to respond.

Renna’s suit maintains that the Union County Alliance Board of Directors is a public agency, according to the terms of the OPRA, and violated the law by failing to provide the requested documents.

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