When the slots gambling law passed in the middle of the night, with no public hearings and no law to control lobbyists, it contained major flaws. It let public officials have a financial interest in gambling operations. It took away a community's right to decide its own future by taking away the power to say no to a slots parlor. It gave enormous powers to a "control board" that can bypass important laws and is essentially accountable to no one. It made bogus assumptions about how much money gambling would raise and when.
These flaws could have been avoided if lawmakers, the governor and the Supreme Court had followed the Constitution and worked on this law in the open instead of in secret. But because they operated in secret, the government has forced taxpayers to spend millions defending the law in court and trying to undo the damage that secrecy did in the first place.
Transparency guarantees the right of citizens to participate in their government before laws are passed, not after. It also encourages the competition of ideas that makes for better laws at lower cost and earns the citizens' confidence.