NEFAC Suggests N.H. Right to Know Ombudsman Policy Changes

CONTACT Justin Silverman | 774.244.2365 |

Update (Jan. 26, 2024): Thomas Kerr, the state’s Right to Know Ombudsman, responded to NEFAC’s concerns


The New England First Amendment Coalition requested changes today to policies proposed by the New Hampshire Right to Know Ombudsman.

Thomas Kerr, who serves as the state’s first ombudsman, is considering changes to certain procedures and ethical standards within his office. NEFAC evaluated Rko 100, 200 and 300.

In a Jan. 22 letter to Kerr, NEFAC President Gregory V. Sullivan explained the following as it relates to the public records hearing process:

Our first concern relates to proposed rule Rko 230.06(b), as it does not contain the language contained in Rko 203.07, allowing for electronic filing, i.e. “unless an electronic system has been instituted pursuant to described in Rko 203.02 (b) so as to allow for electronic submissions…” We believe that the electronic filing language should also be inserted as a sub-paragraph (4) to Rko 208.01(a).

NEFAC is the region’s leading advocate for the First Amendment and the public’s right to know about government. All coalition briefs, advocacy letters and statements can be found here.

NEFAC was formed in 2006 to advance and protect the Five Freedoms of the First Amendment, including the principle of the public’s right to know. We’re a broad-based organization of people who believe in the power of an informed democratic society. Our members include lawyers, journalists, historians, academics and private citizens.

Our coalition is funded through contributions made by those who value the First Amendment and who strive to keep government accountable. Please make a donation here.

NEFAC is supported by the Estate of Gloria Negri. Additional funding is provided by Leadership Circle donors including the Rhode Island Foundation, The Boston Globe, Paul and Ann Sagan, and the Robertson Foundation. Major Supporters of NEFAC’s work are Hearst Connecticut Media Group, Boston University, the Academy of New England Journalists, the Society of Professional Journalists Foundation, Genie Gannett for the First Amendment Museum, Linda Pizzuti Henry, the Champa Charitable Foundation Fund, Connecticut Public and WBUR-Boston.