INDOT tells employees to keep their opinions to themselves

Should public employees be allowed to speak their minds in public documents? We think so, but a recent directive by the Indiana Department of Transportation suggests otherwise. INDOT’s policy change drew criticism from ICOG President Gerry Lanosga, quoted in a piece by Associated Press reporter Tom LoBianco:

Gerry Lanosga, president of the Indiana Coalition for Open Government, said he was “offended at the idea that officials are asking public employees to self-censor what they put in routine logs like the ones at issue here.”

“Employees shouldn’t feel pressure not to be forthcoming about their professional evaluations in such documents, but asking them to keep their personal opinions out will almost certainly cause them to hesitate in offering qualitative judgments regarding programs and projects that could be very valuable to the public,” he said.