Fort Worth/Dallas Metro Area Leads in Requests to Block Information from General Public

After the Sharptown stock fraud scandal in the 1970s, Texas has made an effort to make as much information available to the public as possible. Now, however, officials in many different cities are requesting at increasingly higher rates to keep what would be public information private.
In Texas, the Texas Public Information Act requires in many cases that requests to block information from the general public need to be approved by the Texas Attorney General. City officials may request that such information, such as car accidents, police shootings, domestic violence, and child abuse, along with many other statistics, be kept from the public due to confidentiality concerns they believe need to be addressed. Not all of the requests are granted, and some are only partially granted, or that some of the information does need to be released to the public.
Cities are ranked by looking at how many requests are filed with the attorney general per 100,000 people living in the city. McKinney ranked number one for the number of requests they filed in 2011, with 324 requests per 100,000 residents. Six other metro cities made the top ten list, including Dallas and Fort Worth. Grand Prairie ranked 20th with a mere 6 requests per 100,000 people.
State officials are now questioning why there have been so many requests in recent years, and why the majority of these requests are coming from one metropolitan area. State officials are not happy with the situation, while city officials continue to defend their actions. Many city officials have reported that they would rather err on the side of caution in this situation.