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Help Us Shine A Light on the Govenment

Knowledge will forever govern ignorance; and a people who mean to be their own governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.

– James Madison

Open governments are good governments. Transparency makes governments more efficient and makes public officials more accountable to taxpayers. After all, it's your money. You're right to know.

Since April, 1990, the New Mexico Foundation for Open Government has been protecting your right and advocating for government transparency. Today, we need your support yearround.

Give $25 a month
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underwrite our popular hotline and funds our mission to education, advocate and litigate for open government.

New Mexico's Sunshine Laws, the Inspection of Pubic Records Act and Open Meetings Act, are strong, but New Mexico got a failing grade for public access to government information from the Center for Public Integrity in 2015.

Three years after the report recommended closing the enforcement gap, some stubborn-headed bureaucrats continue to ignore their duty to provide access to inspect public records. Others try to avoid public scrutiny and lock behind closed doors

Join NMFOG today.
Your membership dues ensure we have the resources to battle any attempt to send New Mexico back to the dark age.

With your membership support we'll add to this record of accomplishments:

  • Responded to 500+ hotline calls and emails last year.
  • Educate citizens and public officials about open government. Our training seminars help ensure that New Mexico's robust sunshine laws are actually being read, understood and used in the real world. We also inform public officials if we believe they're violating sunshine laws, and we keep our members and the broader public apprised of new developments and challenges in open government.
  • Lobby for stronger freedom-of-information laws. During legislative sessions, NMFOG is at the Roundhouse to promote greater access and oppose new secrecy laws. Our landmark successes include a major overhaul of the Inspection of Public Records Act and Open Meetings Act in 1993, and the opening of legislative conference committees in 2009. FOG helped to pass legislation in 2011 to guarantee access to electronic versions of public records, a long-overdue modernization of the Inspection of Public Records Act and in 2013 FOG helped enact legislation requiring public bodies to post public meeting agendas 72 hours in advance.
  • Argue for court decisions that uphold public access. New Mexico sunshine laws are strong, but the courts inevitably need to play umpire from time to time. As the leading expert on state sunshine law, NMFOG tries to weigh in whenever major freedom-of-information cases come before an appellate court. And on several occasions, we have initiated or joined open-government lawsuits in district court.
  • Make sure the 'fine print' in records and meetings policies is citizen-friendly. State law lays out broad principles and minimum requirements, but local policy is where rubber meets the road. NMFOG has worked with numerous agencies over the years to promote records and meetings policies that not only respect legal rights but also provide equitable, convenient and low-cost access to information and a positive customer-service experience for citizens.
  • Recognize open-government champions. Since 2002, NMFOG has given the William S. Dixon First Amendment Freedom Award to people who advance open government in the areas of law, journalism, education, government and business. The annual awards luncheon also serves as our primary fundraiser.

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