The Indiana Department of Environmental Management is drawing criticism for its decision to no longer publish its notices on air quality issues in local newspapers.
IDEM spokesperson Amy Hartsock, says residents can go to the department’s website and sign up for either postal or email notices.
“Our objective is to make sure that people are able to receive the information and do know how to participate and can take part and find the information that we provide in a timely manner,” Hartsock said.
The transition to an electronic format will save IDEM about $75,000. Hoosier State Press Association Executive director Steve Key says the change will mean the general public will no longer be informed about air quality.
“What is the purpose of public notice? A public notice is to let a public at large know what the agencies are doing,” Key said.
IDEM defends its decision, citing the need to publish its information in a more timely manner than some weekly published newspapers can provide. Hartsock says IDEM is still abiding by federal meeting notice requirements.