Mayor Gray proposes records requests bill

WASHINGTON (AP) - Public agencies would have more time to respond to requests for public records under legislation proposed by District of Columbia Mayor Vincent Gray.

The bill would extend the time period for responding from 15 to 20 days and would also broaden the types of records and documents that the government may withhold from the public.

The bill would allow the agencies to put the 20-day deadline on hold while they seek additional clarification about what information the requester is seeking.

A spokeswoman for the woman deferred comment to Attorney General Irvin Nathan, who says the bill is intended to reduce what he says is "abuse" by some public records requesters.

Thomas Susman, the president of the D.C. Open Government Coalition, calls the mayor's proposal "shameful" and a step backward.