The BGA’s fishing expedition and off the record e-mails
Tuesday, Jan 10, 2017
* From WMAY…
Actually, no. The BGA originally FOIA’d all e-mails sent to or by Gov. Rauner and communications guys Lance Trover and Mike Schrimpf from January 12-19, 2015. That includes, by definition, e-mails that reporters sent to Trover and Schrimpf along with the replies.
* So, what the heck is going on here? From the BGA…
So, apparently they’re trying to figure out whether Rauner and some people in the governor’s office are sending government-related e-mails on private e-mail accounts.
I gotta admit it will be interesting to see what they dig up on Rauner because he supposedly doesn’t do e-mail any longer and has no state e-mail account.
But the target date of that FOIA is, as mentioned above, the day after the swearing in. I imagine people still didn’t have fully functioning offices yet. Whatever they find might not mean much.
I checked my in-box and I can’t find a single government-related e-mail from Trover or Schrimpf that was sent from their personal G-Mail accounts. All the government-related e-mails I’ve received have been from their state accounts.
* In the meantime, does this mean that the BGA wants to gain access to off the record exchanges between the governor’s office and reporters? The governor’s people say that’s one reason why they’re resisting the FOIA. I asked Andy Shaw, and he sent me to his group’s attorney Matt Topic, who e-mailed me a few hours later…
So, in other words, if I ask a question off the record and/or receive an off the record response, that’s FOIA-able.
I don’t think I love that idea.
…Adding… I think some may be unclear on this. If I send an off the record question or whatever to someone’s private e-mail account, is that really fair game for FOIA? I haven’t done so with Trover, but seriously? You should be able to access that correspondence, too?
…Adding More… I really think off the record reporter conversations are (or should be) exempted from FOIA. From the exemption list..
So, I truly don’t see how anyone can think that confidential, off the record conversations which could put commercial media outlets at a competitive disadvantage are FOIA-able.