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The Honolulu City Ethics Commission has just adopted a new policy that minimizes government transparency.

The staff are now mandated to go through a cumbersome approval process before speaking to the media:

“Additionally, any written media communications put out by the commission now needs to be sent to, in order, commission members, complainants and respondents (when applicable), the mayor and his Cabinet, City Council members, and then [emphasis added] media and members of the general public who have asked to see commission news releases.”

An internal staff recommendation, ignored by the Commission, states that the new policy ” …will be counterproductive to the goals of ethics education and transparency.”

Could this be old-boy politics? See this excellent editorial in the Star-Advertiser by Gordon Pang.