UNC-Chapel Hill Public Records Request
Public Records Request (Feb. 9, 2015)
Demand Letter (May 11, 2015)
Fulfilled Records Request (May 26, 2015)
Analysis (June 9, 2015)
In early February of 2015, the Civitas Institute filed a public records request with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill asking for any records related to a dinner featuring high-ranking university officials and several student groups. At issue was whether the university excluded student groups with conservative or libertarian leanings. After seeing no action taken on our request for three months, while more complicated requests filed later were being fulfilled, we threatened suit against the university, citing the requirement that public entities respond to public records request “as promptly as possible.” Upon receipt of our letter, the university fulfilled our records request. Our conclusion upon receipt of the records was that the university did exclude several non-political conservative-leaning groups from the event, but that the error was a result of the planners’ inherent bias rather than some master plan to exclude conservatives.