Posts Tagged ‘Freedom of Information Act’
July 20th, 2011 at 3:06 pm
Soda Companies Fight Back Against the Regulatory State

What to do when your industry is singled out by government regulators as a threat to public health?  If you’re in the soft drink industry, use the Freedom of Information Act against state and local governments to get documents that show how regulators use taxpayer dollars to attack legal commercial enterprises.

Earlier this month, the American Beverage Association sued New York City’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, which has been at the forefront of education efforts in the fight against obesity. The ABA says the city improperly withheld documents it sought through the Freedom of Information Act.

ABA spokesman Chris Gindlesperger said his group made the same request as the New York Times, but that the newspaper received more information than the ABA.

“Public health departments are going out and aggressively misrepresenting our products in advertising and using taxpayer money to do that,” Gindlesperger said.

Big government advocates are complaining that the FOI requests are “an effort to overwhelm or smother government employees, who already have too much to do.”

Then again, maybe those same government employees could lighten their load a bit by stopping the PR campaign against an industry selling a legal product to satisfied consumers.