CCA Argues Settlement Records Should be Private

Attorneys for the Nashville-based private prison company Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) this week told members of the state Court of Appeals that the company should not have to turn over copies of its legal settlements to the public. The appeals court previously ruled that CCA is subject to Tennessee’s Open Records law because it performs a governmental function by running prisons and jails. CCA lawyers argued that legal settlements are different because the company “is not acting on behalf of the government when it defends itself in court.” But the court did not seem persuaded as Judge Richard Dinkins quipped that “everything from paperclip orders to settlement documents” at CCA comes with the presumption of being public. The Elizabethton Star has this AP story.