Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Viral Email or Email Virus

This email thing could be bogged down in the legal system for a good little while.

Today I wondered what types of material is generally supposed to be redacted from an email records request.

According to one Council aide:

"Personnel files, city credit card info, passwords, whistleblower emails, attorney-client privilege, correspondence pertaining to city litigation such as with Entergy, personal emails from family, friends, or doctors; constituent emails containing their contact information, emails with federal authorities of federal investigations - those are the examples that come to mind."

What of that is explicitly redacted under the law?

"The law is explicit with attorney-client privilege and personal email. Some of the other categories are derived from other laws, including case law. Making correspondence with the feds public or distributing could be obstruction of justice."

Yeesh. Serious.

Not looking good on WWLTV, either.

Someone did something stupid between Veronica White and the Office of Technology and could end up getting in trouble.


Asked if the administration is considering disciplinary action against city employees who took part in releasing the information, Nagin spokesman James Ross said no decision has been made.

"This is the first time during Mayor Nagin's administration that such a situation has occurred, " Ross stated in an e-mail, adding that Chief Administrative Officer Brenda Hatfield is reviewing the matter and will make a recommendation to the mayor.

It's a rare day that the Nagin administration even suggests that someone maybe could be recommended for possible discipline-like action. So it definitely sounds like somebody did something really wrong between Veronica White and a select few individuals at the Mayor's Office of Technology (and those guys are in enough trouble as it is).

**(Not to mention the Mayor's own optics problems when it comes to his emails. Did you see read Jarvis DeBerry's recent piece where he compares Nagin to Kwame Kilpatrick?)


To go on a related tangent, is it just me or is Tracie Washington always getting people into trouble in the magical world of the electronic letter?

Here's a great one Tracie Washington sent to Brenda Hatfield from 2007 that has since circulated:


I represent the children of Verlin J. Dix, Sr., one of the recipients of the
CONO letters advising of impending property demolition. Kindly remove this
property from the demolition list. This property has been boarded and poses
no health threat to anyone, or anything. The family is awaiting insurance
proceeds so that they can begin remediation.

To the extent you all cannot comprehend the devastation these letters cause
our elderly citizens, Verlin J. Dix, Sr. was my uncle, and his family has
owned this property and Alexis Fried Chicken and Seafood for generations.
Post Hurricane Katrina, they have battled with the insurance companies
trying to be made whole so that they can reopen this business, and the many
other businesses formerly housed in this building. Those battles continue.

Unfortunately for my uncle, the post-Katrina depression brought on by the
many pressures of losing his properties, which he had worked so hard during
his adult life to acquire, were just too overwhelming and, frankly, I
believe this last letter from the City of New Orleans was just too much. On
Saturday morning he took his life, simply walking into the Mississippi

I don't sue the City of New Orleans and its mayor for sport. These
defendants are sued because their actions and ineptitude often cause real
tragedy, especially for our older African-American citizens. I'm not sure
you all get this, and that's just plain unfortunate.


Tracie L. Washington, Esq.
The Louisiana Justice Institute


There are a bunch of scandals going on right now and I'm a little disappointed we haven't been giving them fun names. I mean, what are we supposed to tag posts related to this email kerfuffle? It seems to be just that complicated.

Traciegate? Nah.

I almost titled this post E-MOAH but the two scandals aren't really related enough for it to work.

Help me out here.


Anonymous said...

V. White is retaliateing against the city council. Plain and simple! I think Nagin is her secret lover. Cant wait till that news brakes. LOL

Anonymous said...

Just call it "FREE-MAIL" They've been released. They're on the loose.

Anonymous said...

Bourbon St. E-mails

The Lame Affair



E-Bay of Pigs

These are bad and make no sense.

Getting worse:

tE-mail Dome Scandal

XYZ Affair: It's always something at City Hall. Name something, there's a scandal about it.

Leigh C. said...

All of it simply adds up to "Trouble in River City". I almost want to resurrect Robert Preston.

Red said...

Great post E!

I was just comparing the dates Veronica was going thru her drama with Stacy Head and when she turned over the emails. Head's public threat to fire her and Veronica storming out of the council happened around Nov. 11th. Two weeks later, she began doing damage control, giving television interviews and publishing an open letter in Sylvain's newsletter telling her side of the story (

Three days after publishing her case, she circumvents administration protocols and hands over thousands of city council emails to Washington.

You can practically feel her fury unfurling as she tossed those email-filled discs into the winds of fate LOL!

Superdeformed said...

Title Suggestion:

Anonymous said...

what was the point of posting that letter? is that supposed to be a knock on Tracie Washington or Brenda Hatfield. help me out, i'm not following.

E said...

People are free to interpret the letter any way they'd like.

I think it makes Tracie look pretty good and Brenda look pretty horrible.