Accessibility of private information in question for state legislators
MDN Menu
MDN.ORG Mo. Digital News Missouri Digital News MDN.ORG: Mo. Digital News MDN.ORG: Missouri Digital News

Accessibility of private information in question for state legislators

Date: February 24, 2010
By: Alana Young
State Capitol Bureau

Intro:  Some lawmakers are using taxpayer funded cell phones, but whether taxpayers should be able to access those cell phone records is up for debate.
RunTime:  0:45
OutCue:  SOC

Wrap: Taxpayers are paying for the reimbursement of some legislators private cell phones, and these legislators are concerned their personal phone calls could become public record.

House members raised concerns about their privacy on state-reimbursed cell phones in the House Administration and Accounts Committee meeting Wednesday afternoon.

Among those testifying before the committee is Chief Clerk of the Missouri House Adam Crumbliss.

Actuality:  CRUMBLISS1.WAV
Run Time:  00:09
Description: If you are using your individual office computer for something, I would suggest that personally, you're probably safer not to, but, in the process, that's not necessarily a sunshinable record.

Where the line stands between legislature's public and private communication was still uncertain at the closing of the committee meeting.

From the State Capitol, I'm Alana Young

Intro:  Some House committee members want to know if their taxpayer funded cell phones are subject to the Missouri Sunshine law.
RunTime:  0:38
OutCue:  SOC

Wrap: During a meeting Wednesday afternoon, House Administration and Accounts committee members questioned the extent of their privacy on taxpayer reimbursed private cell phones.

Missouri House Chief Clerk Adam Crumbliss spoke on how the Sunshine law would affect legislators' private information.

Actuality:  CRUMBLISS2.WAV
Run Time:  00:10
Description: The Sunshine law applies to records of the public governmental body, and those are the records that would be sunshinable, not things in your committee. Excuse me, in your individual office.

But Clarksburg Republican Representative Kenny Jones said with the current economic situation, lawmakers should be paying for their own cell phones.

From the State Capitol, I'm Alana Young

Missouri Digital News is produced by Missouri Digital News, Inc. -- a non profit organization of current and former journalists.