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Sunshine Week

Local news matters. Ask your legislator to support the Local Journalism Sustainability Act.

by Mar 19, 2023
People around Riverhead are always telling us they don’t know what they’d do without us here to keep them informed. We appreciate that so much. Unfortunately, too many communities across NY have no local news source reporting on local issues. And the numbers keep shrinking.

‘Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or perhaps, both’

by Mar 18, 2022
"[A] popular Government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or perhaps, both,” James Madison, Father of our Constitution" warned.

‘Sunshine Week’ series: Why the future of local journalism matters — to you

by Mar 16, 2019
According to academic studies of communities that lost their local newspapers, government became more inefficient, civic engagement and voter turnout declined and — get this — the cost of municipal borrowing went up. That’s what happens when the press isn’t around to fulfill its role as government watchdog.

‘Sunshine Week’ series: Riverhead Town must do these things to ensure transparency and ethics in government

by Mar 15, 2019
The town needs a more comprehensive code of ethics as well as rules to govern the conduct of public officials presiding over adjudicatory hearings. These are steps that will institutionalize transparency and act as guardrails to protect the public interest.

‘Sunshine Week’ series: Reporting on crime in the dark — when police don’t provide basic information

by Mar 14, 2019
It's hard to have confidence in the crime reports you compile when the information provided by police is inconsistent and incomplete.

‘Sunshine Week’ series: Transparency in government requires public notices that are easily accessible for all

by Mar 13, 2019
Public notices are a basic building block of government transparency, yet an archaic state law mandates their publication in a medium that fewer and fewer people are using: print newspapers. The result is a big problem for government transparency.

‘Sunshine Week’ series: What’s the big secret? Public records, meet the 21st century

by Mar 12, 2019
By law, most government documents are public documents, accessible by the public, as they should be. Nevertheless, many government officials — especially the lawyers — behave as if national security is at stake and they work for the CIA. 

‘Sunshine Week’ series: How to improve transparency in public meetings

by Mar 11, 2019
Local governments have come a long way in achieving transparency in public meetings, in large measure thanks to technological advances and the internet, but they've still got a long way to go.

‘Sunshine Week’ special series: Why open government matters

by Mar 10, 2019
After nearly 20 years of local news reporting, I could fill a book with stories of government officials trying to prevent reporters — and hence, the public — from finding out what they’re up to.

Riverhead scores an ‘A+’ in island-wide audit of Freedom of Information Law compliance by counties, towns, villages

by Mar 13, 2017
Riverhead Town got a top score on a report card issued today by the Press Club of Long Island, following a 16-month audit of 195 county agencies, cities, towns and villages in Suffolk and Nassau. The Village of Greenport scored a 'C'.