High court upholds privacy of JobsOhio records

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Ohio Supreme Court has dismissed a lawyer's request for records kept by the state's privatized job-creation agency on procedural grounds.

Ohio-Jobs-Agency-Audi Sidd

In this Nov. 2, 2010 photo, then Ohio Auditor-elect Dave Yost speaks to supporters during the Ohio Republican Party celebration in Columbus, Ohio. Auditor Yost scolded Gov. John Kasich's signature job-creation office on Thursday, Nov. 21, 2013, for some sloppy handling of ethics and conflict-of-interest procedures in its first year, but he cleared JobsOhio'€™s staff of the business conflict questions that have dogged the office. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

The decision came Tuesday in a complaint filed by former ProgressOhio attorney Victoria Ullmann. She filed the complaint in August after being dropped as lead lawyer on a more high-profile constitutional challenge to JobsOhio that continues.

Justices said the state law creating JobsOhio "specifically exempted" the office from Ohio's public records law.

Ullmann had asked justices to declare JobsOhio a state agency because the privatized economic development entity acts as the "functional equivalent" of one under the law. Such a ruling would have opened JobsOhio to public records requests and other forms of scrutiny that were prevented under its enabling legislation.