Destroying Government Emails After 90 Days Is A Bad Idea

When Andrew Cuomo began his term as Governor of New York State he promised that he would run the most transparent and open government in state history. While Cuomo talks a good game his actions are very different as far as keeping his promise of open and transparent government.

The most recent example is a new proposed state government policy to destroy all government emails after 90 days. Destroying government emails after 90 days is a horrible policy that will hurt the public’s right to know what our government officials are up to. With unlimited email storage available at minimal cost, what is the rush to destroy government issued emails?

The Governor claims to support open and transparent government yet:

– Cuomo and his top staff use an untraceable email service on their BlackBerries to communicate.

– Cuomo administration officials purged records from the state archives from Cuomo’s time as attorney general.

– Despite a Freedom of Information request from the New York Times, Cuomo has refused to release a ten-minute video he and his aides mocking their reputation for secrecy, that was played it at the Albany press corps’ annual gala.

– The details of Cuomo’s legislative items are often not publicly disclosed with enough time for public discussion and input.

– During his campaign, Governor Cuomo pledged to increase transparency in the governor’s office by posting his meetings on the internet, but his online schedule rarely contain more detail than a single sentence identifying the city where the governor will spend the day. As Attorney General Cuomo refused to provide a copy of his schedule, something that previous Attorney Generals did not have a problem with.

Despite his talk, Cuomo has a history of secrecy and broken promises when it comes to transparency in government. Destroying state government emails after 90 days is just the latest example of Cuomo operating one of the most secretive governments in state history.

What do you think, should government officials be allowed to destroy emails after 90 days?

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Henry Brown

Most of the time the politicians talk a good game BUT the mindset seems to be I am above all this political stuff but we can hold the other politicians to very high standards of Transparency….

Classic Dick!

Monika Dlugopolski

There are a number of recordkeeping obligations. Most of all, official business records must be retained as per records schedules. This doesn’t mean that emails should be kept in our mailboxes for ever and ever. Rather, proper records management techniques must be applied….perhaps they save/retain important business emails somewhere and the rest gets deleted…I’d like to believe that – but I honestly doubt that.