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Dayton signs 'Timberjay bill' into law

  • May 31, 2014 - 6:54 PM

Gov. Mark Dayton has signed into law a bill that would make public contracts by private companies who enter into projects with the government under state open records laws, but nixed a portion ordering a study of how well state agencies protect citizens’ personal data.

Known as the “Timberjay bill,” the law requires that all government contracts include notice that the Minnesota Data Practices Act applies to private businesses, even when the notice is not included in the contract. The bill excludes health plan companies, managed care organizations, county-based purchasing plans and others from the notice requirement until June 30, 2015.

Approved unanimously in the state House and Senate, the bill was written in response to a Minnesota Supreme Court decision that found that a private business that contracted with a St. Louis County school district to renovate buildings isn’t subject to state open-records laws.

The bill also clarifies how the Department of Public Safety must sell driver’s license and motor vehicle records, establishing a bulk rate fee.

Dayton vetoed a portion of the bill that would fund a study by the Office of the Legislative Auditor to learn how secure state systems are at securing and transmitting data, including citizens’ personal information.

 

Abby Simons

© 2014 Star Tribune