Introduction to Minnesota Public Records
Public records are any form of media that was collected by, created by, or distributed in the government. Even government sponsored organizations - like libraries and the police force - will have information in public records, and these documents may be requested by anyone that is seeking out specific info.
Each state has its own laws regarding what is placed in these records and how they are distributed. Minnesota public records law is called the "Minnesota Government Data Practices Act." The act is designed to ensure that every record is carefully saved, collected, and made accessible to those that want it.
Not only does Minnesota public records law decide what records are made public, but it also imposes criminal penalties on government officials that refuse to supply you with the documents you request (provided they are truly applicable as public records). This law takes the creation and release of public records very seriously.
The Freedom of Information Act is more than simply a way of pretending that governments are accountable. It truly makes sure that the government makes its information public. No other law helps each state become as transparent, and the law is a great example of how you live in a free country.