Charlotte City Council Members Cannon, Howard, James, Barnes and Cooksey all have "Private" email accounts. Mayor Foxx, and Council Members Fallon, Pickering, Kinsey, Mayfield, Autry, and Dulin have opted for the "new" Charlottenc.gov email address.
But still Dulin and Kinsey have private email addresses that they routinely use to communicate with each other and with citizens.
Recently South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has been under fire for the deletion of email records and the use of "personal email" accounts. Additionally, former South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford's staff deleted thousands of emails during the final days of his administration.
Many suspect that Mayor Foxx' assistant Tracy Montross deleted emails from her private Yahoo.com email account, but who really knows? More so who within Charlotte and Mecklenburg County government is responsible for making sure public records are not deleted?
The more pressing question is, why does a full time City of Charlotte employee like Montross conduct city business, via a private email account in the first place?
Clearly the deletion of emails is a violation of public records law. For all the promises of transparency in government made by elected officials, something is just not right if the only person controlling the email account is able to delete records on a daily basis.
Cedar's Take: It is time North Carolina's elected officials take action and forbid any City, State or County employee or elected official from conducting business via a personal email account. It is time that Charlotte City Council members stop using private email accounts.
I am personally calling on Charlotte's City Council to put this concern on the agenda as soon as possible. To ignore this concern will only add to the belief that Charlotte's elected officials have something to hide.
Cedar Posts has emailed Mayor Foxx and Members of Charlotte City Council. We'll let you know should they respond.
Update: January 5, 2012 Nearly a week later only newly elected Council Member Claire Fallon responded and stated she intended to use only the City of Charlotte email address.
If you would like to contact Mayor Foxx and City Council about this matter you may do so at the following email addresses:
firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org,
email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com,
JamesDistrict2@aol.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com,
firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org