When Will Hawaii Save Taxpayer Money and Quit Putting Paid Public Notices in Newspapers?

I’d love to know how much Hawaii County is wasting on public and legal notices printed in the newspapers that are REQUIRED to be be posted in the newspapers.

There is an organization called Legal Notice Online that has been monitoring the policies of different states laws regarding legal and public notices and today they sent out the following.

Simply put… the State and the County could save lots of money by putting these notices online, they could reach a larger audience in a more timely basis, they could save a lot of paper waste, and they could control any changes in the notice if need be at any time?

Competition In The Legal Notice World? We Hope So.

A new non-profit trade group- The Local Independent Online News Publishers (LION) was formed this month, it has been reported. Over 100 of these publishers, according to CJR.org will gather at the Block by Block conference next month in Chicago.

How Does This Effect The World of Legal Notices?

We’ve discussed the emerging influence of the hyperlocal news sites when they’ve made noise in specific public notice legislative battles over the past year. In most instances, though the local publisher has acted on his or own. So far, better organized Press Associations have defeated the online publishers, often with professional lobbyists and legislative arm twisting. As a group, maybe LION will allow these hyperlocal sites to help each other in moving public opinion.

LION has stated neither on their Facebook page nor on their web site that they intend to try to be considered as newspapers of record for the lucrative publishing of legal notices in their local communities. We think it is a worthy endeavor and is consistent with several of their values and strategic goals. More than that, competition in that world would save all taxpayers money.

According to LION’s web site, The Patterson Foundation provided support for the initial organizational effort. Dylan Smith, publisher of the TucsonSentinel.com and former online editor of the Tucson Citizen is the organization’s chairman.

The emergence of this type of organization is a great story for all media. Smith sees this organization as the future and we hope he’s right. From the ashes of the burning of the unwieldy corporate, profit motivated journalistic behemoths rises grass roots journalism organizations that are in touch with their readers and are the watchdogs of their communities. 

To read how other states are addressing this issue Click HERE

One Response

  1. To answer your question multiply the population by 2.75 or so and you get a good guesstimate as to the aggregate spend on legal notices. This varies but it is a good benchmark. That includes both what the governent is wasting and what onus on private industry (foreclosure notices must be put in the paper … name changes … and in some jurisdictions, llc filings) So if Hawaii County’s population is 186,000 then figure about $500K could be saved by putting notices on line. Some online publs are already publishing them for free to prove how easy it is and they are doing so with way more functionality than any newspaper or government. I thought SB 2233 tales place in July of next year and it passed both the Senate and the House? does anyone know anything about it?

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