The County of Santa Clara in California, which has battled fiercely against public information record requests for its GIS data, has recently paid a $500,000 settlement to the First Amendment Coalition. The settlement will cover the legal fees of the watchdog organization which first sued the county in 2006 for refusing to provide GIS data requested under the California Public Records Act. Santa Clara County had argued that their GIS data was not subject to release as it contained sensitive information protected under the federal homeland security laws and that their maps were copyrighted. Those arguments were rejected in February by the 6th District U.S. Court of Appeal.
Read more: Santa Clara County pays $500,000 over records dispute – Mercury News