Gov. Peter Shumlin's office says it will cost media outlets more than $20,000 to release all of the emails the governor's lawyer requested be deleted last month. In addition, the administration has denied a Burlington Free Press request for ethics questionnaires in which Shumlin's appointees disclosed potential conflicts of interest.
Administration officials released 5,500 pages of emails late last week. Shumlin spokesman Scott Coriell said those were a "representative sample." The governor's office provided those documents free of charge in the name of transparency, Coriell said, but to go through the tens of thousands of emails in former staff accounts would require hiring temporary help.
Shumlin's lawyer, Sarah London, requested the emails of former staff members be deleted after the Secretary of State's office updated the records retention schedule. The request was made around the same time as the Securities and Exchange Commission filed a civil complaint accusing Jay Peak developers Ariel Quiros and Bill Stenger of massive fraud. One former senior staffer, Alex MacLean, went on to work at Jay Peak after leaving Shumlin's office. Administration officials said any emails relating to the EB-5 program or Jay Peak have been placed under a litigation hold and were not part of the deletion request.
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