Bob Flanagan is suing Howard County for access to Public Records; Local Howard County podcaster Tom Coale a key figure in the suit

If you are a Maryland Reporter fan (as I am) maybe you came across this post recently: FORMER DELEGATE SEEKS RECORDS FROM BALL RELATED TO COMMUNICATIONS WITH ZONING LOBBYIST

  • The “Former Delegate” is Robert (Bob) Flanagen (Member of House of Delegates, January 14, 1987 to February 28, 2003, representing District 14B (Howard & Montgomery counties), and District 9A (Howard County), and January 14, 2015 to January 9, 2019, representing District 9B (Howard County))
  • The lobbyist noted in the lawsuit is Thomas (Tom) Coale, an attorney with the Ellicott City law firm Talkin & OH, LLP (also former HoCo Blogger, former candidate for Delegate in District 9B and current podcaster with Elevate Maryland)

A little background to take this a little further down the political lane…Bob Flanagan defeated Tom Coale in the 2014 race for Delegate in District 9B:

Now back to this details of this lawsuit…Flanagan claims he has been denied access to 497 of 748 emails requested as part of a Maryland Public Information Act (MPIA) request (even after paying the fee of $863 charged by the County to obtain the documents requested). Here is some intersting information noted in the lawsuit:

I have to admit that I am a bit shocked that Howard County Government is denying access or dragging their feet on the access to these records. Seems very odd and this will be interesting to track how this all plays out.

On my to do list now…reach out to former Delegate Flanagan to get additional details and maybe an online interview (if he is willing to talk about it in a Zoom broadcast).

I would recommend reading the Maryland Reporter article for additional details:

If interested in reading the full details of the complaint you can view it here: Complant with Exhibits Accepted

Mr. Coale has been more directly dealing with other cases in Howard County Circuit Court recently. There is the Defamation cases filed against a Howard County Podcaster, a Blogger, and an Elected Official:

Interesting times in Howard County.

Scott E

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