Friday, February 28, 2014

City Hall to Purge Emails Older Than a Year

Voice of San Diego reported that, temporary Mayor, Todd Gloria, plans to destroy public records by eliminating all City of San Diego email records older than one year old, under claims that their storage is too expensive and not financed in the current City budget.

City Hall to Purge Emails Older Than a Year

Update: Californians Aware, the government transparency advocacy group led by Terry Francke, may sue to stop the destruction of old emails. Francke sent a letter to city leaders today. Here’s an excerpt:

This policy contravenes existing law. Emails clearly fall within the definition of a public record. Government Code §6252(e). Further, city records are required to be retained for a minimum of two years. Government Code §34090 et seq. Destruction of public records may also be punishable criminally.

Therefore, we request that you immediately direct all city officials and staff to cancel the wholesale destruction of public records announced in your memorandum and that the City rescind or revise this and any other policy authorizing the wholesale destruction of city emails older than one year.

Due to the time-sensitive nature of this issue, we request that you respond confirming agreement to, at the very least, suspend this practice until we have had time to seek judicial intervention if necessary. However, if you do not respond confirming that there will be no purge of any public records by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 11, 2014, we will have no choice but to seek a injunction and writ of mandate ordering the City to cease the destruction of these public records in violation of the Government Code.

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