State lawmakers are considering a proposal that would limit public access to the state's online court records system.
State Representative Marlin Schneider (D-Wisconsin Rapids) says the current C-CAP system is too easily abused by potential employers and landlords. The Wisconsin Rapids Democrat says too many people ignore reminders that the information can't be used to discriminate. He also worries that people improperly associate a name listed on the site with a potential employee or job applicant.
To prevent such cases, Schneider has introduced a bill that would limit database access to only judges, law enforcement, attorneys, and accredited journalists. They'd have to use a special system to access the information. Physical court records would still be available to the public in the county they were filed.
Freedom of information advocates are opposed to the legislation. Taylor County Judge Gary Carlson says the system belongs to the public and access to it shouldn't have conditions. Carlson says judges or lawyers shouldn't have any special access to the online database.
The proposal received a Capitol hearing on Thursday. It's currently being considered by an Assembly committee.
WSAU's Matt Lehman contributed to this report.