Wednesday, August 17, 2016

"Investments" from public institutions and "proprietary information"....

"Dishonest scales are an abomination to the Lord,
But a just weight is His delight."
Proverbs 11:1

Several months ago, we made several open records requests related to UT's 'venture' fund.  The system was actually quite responsive to two of them.  We just reviewed third party correspondence related to the third.

On June 2nd, we requested "[a]ll communication between the UT-Horizon fund and any member of the Board of Regents over the past seven years."  Shortly thereafter, the system turned over a tranche of materials while kicking part of the request over to the Attorney General's office.  As part of that process, two Horizon fund grantees have filed requests to withhold information with the A.G.'s office.

You can read their correspondence for yourself:

This begs the natural follow up question: On what planet is it acceptable for a private entity into which a public entity has 'invested' public funds to withhold information about those 'investments' from the public in the name of protecting proprietary information?!?

If you want to protect proprietary information (which is understandable), don't take seed funding from a governmental entity.

Bottom Line: It might be technically legal, but it isn't right.

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