Kansas officials’ private emails to be subject to disclosure

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) – Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has signed a bill to subject officials’ emails about public business to disclosure even if they’re on private accounts or devices.

Brownback signed the measure Wednesday. Spokeswoman Eileen Hawley said he will follow its requirements.

The new law will close a loophole in the Kansas Open Records Act that has allowed government officials to use private communications to discuss public business without facing disclosure.

Attorney General Derek Schmidt issued an opinion last year saying the records law didn’t apply to such situations.

The issue arose after The Wichita Eagle reported in January 2015 that Budget Director Shawn Sullivan used a private email account to give two lobbyists a preview of budget proposals. Brownback later acknowledged using a private cellphone for most of his communications.

 

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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