The litigation also challenges the City of Morrow’s social media policies as allowing the City to exercise unfettered discretion in how it regulates users’ speech on its social media pages, which the City admits are public forums. For instance, by prohibiting “objectionable content” or “unsupported accusations,” the City grants itself the power to censor speech it finds unflattering or otherwise disfavors. The First Amendment prohibits this kind of viewpoint-based discrimination in any government forum.
Finally, the complaint asserts that the City of Morrow violated the Georgia Open Records Act by refusing to produce documents that fit squarely within the Act’s definition of “public record” and by requiring pre-payment before locating responsive records.
Booterbaugh states, “By bringing this action, my hope is to defend, not just me, but the rights of everyone who is effected by governmental overreach by the City of Morrow and to restore the people’s voice.”
Thanks to Clinic students Jennifer Danker, Delaney Davis, and Warren “Ren” Schmitt, as well as Clinic fellows Lindsey Floyd and Allyson Veile, for their work on this matter under the supervision of Clinic Director Clare Norins.