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FOIA News: State agency fires public records official for releasing a public document

FOIA News (2017)Allan BlutsteinComment

DHHS fired a public records coordinator — for releasing a public record

By Erin Rhoda, BDN Maine, May 17, 2017

Maine’s top disease control office fired the person responsible for coordinating the release of public information after she permitted a public report to be sent to the Bangor Daily News in August.

The move by Maine’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention to terminate Judy Gopaul, a six-year employee, highlights how Maine Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner Mary Mayhew’s office has asserted increased control over the release of public information within the past year.

In addition, a BDN review of documents and emails related to Gopaul’s termination reveals an excessively complicated process, occasionally verging on farcical, for making decisions about how to respond to even the most minor questions from the public.

Read more here.