Police, prosecutors could have names removed from online tax records

Posted June 5, 2014

— House lawmakers have begun crafting a bill that would allow law enforcement officers, district attorneys and assistant district attorneys to request that their names, addresses and phone numbers be removed from city or county websites that display tax records.

Rep. Chris Malone, R-Wake, said the measure was in response to an incident in which the father or a local assistant district attorney was kidnapped, as well as a churn of complaints about daily threats faced by law enforcement. 

"I've had a number of policemen come to me that they've had people they've arrested or had issues with come to their door," Malone said.

Some, he said, have speculated that bad actors have used tax records to find law enforcement and court officials with whom they had issues. 

The bill is question is Senate Bill 78, which was originally drafted as a measure to amend state contracting law. The House Rules Committee stripped the contracting language and added in the privacy measure. Doing so puts the measure on a fast track through the General Assembly, where it could, in theory, bypass review by a Senate committee.

Under the bill, the information regarding the law enforcement officials would remain a public record, but it could not be displayed online once they asked for its removal.

Several members of the committee raised questions about the measure. Rep. Edgar Starnes, R-Caldwell, said he was troubled that the bill could give elected officials the right to have their names protected. District attorneys are elected, and the bill would cover them and their assistants. 

As the committee discussed the bill, one member raised the question of whether or not its provisions should be expanded to include other officials. 

"A lot of decisions we make up here are not received well in our districts," said Rep. Elmer Floyd, D-Cumberland.

However, House Rules Chairman Tim Moore, R-Cleveland, refused to review an amendment that would have expanded the measure's protections. Instead, he said the measure would get further review by a House Judiciary committee.


This blog post is closed for comments.

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  • Danny22 Jun 6, 2014

    I want my name removed too.

  • Kaitlyn Legare Jun 5, 2014
    user avatar

    Like others have said, all taxpayers and property owners should be given this choice.

    And what's with all these bills being totally stripped of their original text and replaced with something completely different? This general assembly sure is playing fast and loose with the rules in order to sneak things through!

  • GETOUT Jun 5, 2014

    This article only stated that if this bill passes "law enforcement, district attorneys and assistant district attorneys" could request for their information to not be public. It says nothing about the politicians would vote yes or no. Im wondering how this affects any of the people on here who thinks it shouldnt be passed. How does it affect the way you operate on a daily basis unless you are the one looking up these individuals information???

  • D2D Jun 5, 2014

    It should apply to everyone. It's just not safe. Anybody can use that information to stalk, assault, kidnap, rob, etc. someone.

  • disgusted2010 Jun 5, 2014

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    I did read the article. I just don't believe the legislators.

  • LetsBeFair Jun 5, 2014

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    then you didnt read the articles.

  • disgusted2010 Jun 5, 2014

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    I truly don't understand your post. If you had read this person's incessant anti-law enforcement, anti government, anti gun, pro liberal media posts you would know where I am coming from. AND by the way if he had his way your gun would be confiscated.

  • Dave Vogel Jun 5, 2014
    user avatar

    Best idea ever! This should have happened a long time ago!!

  • disgusted2010 Jun 5, 2014

    For all you law enforcement haters posting here. The general assembly is proposing this bill. I do not believe for one minute that any law enforcement officers have asked for this. Some may have made comments, but they have not asked for if. If you don't believe it just sit in on legislative committee meetings. Many of the legislators are as bad as some of the posters here, true law enforcement haters.

  • disgusted2010 Jun 5, 2014

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    What bred your extreme hatred of law enforcement? I suppose some of these comments are courtesy of convicts getting more rights, such as internet use.