Media Center

Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen Pleased with Wisconsin Supreme Courts Decision Giving Clarity to Wisconsin's Open Meetings and Public Records Laws

I am pleased with the Court's decision concluding this case. In an opinion released today, the Supreme Court provides state and local officials, members of the public and the press with important guidance about how to apply the open meetings and public records law to certain types of private entities that perform important public functions using tax dollars.


The court held that the Beaver Dam Area Development Corporation is a quasi-governmental corporation primarily because its sole function is to provide economic development services to the City of Beaver Dam, funded solely by tax revenue from the city's room tax.


Of greater importance than the specific holding in this case is that the court's ruling today is an important development in clarifying what kinds of factors should be considered in determining if private entities doing the public's business are covered under the law. In light of the court's decision, those factors are now more clearly delineated.