The Delaware Attorney General’s office released a Freedom of Information Act legal opinion today giving Delaware Governor Carney the right to use executive privilege for a council designed to improve family services in Delaware. In other words, they are allowed to hold non-public meetings and invite whomever they choose with no one the wiser. The Attorney General’s office agreed with Carney’s office because of a very bad “separation of powers” clause in state law.
Executive Order #9
Governor Carney Shuts Out The Public With Family Services Cabinet Council And Screws Transparency & FOIA In DelawareGovernor Carney
Delaware Governor John Carney is embarking down a very dangerous path. I assume this is in response to my article last month about how the first meeting of the Family Services Cabinet Council was closed to the public. Governor Carney rescinded his Executive Order #5 to create Executive Order #9 which established new wording in recreation of the Family Services Cabinet Council:
In accordance with the common law privilege protecting executive communications concerning the deliberative and policy-making processes, the records, investigations, internal communications, deliberations and draft work product of the Council shall be confidential and may be disclosed only at the direction of the Governor.
What kind of nonsense is this John Carney? A Cabinet-level council, and you deliberately shut any discussion this group has out of the public eye? The very term “deliberative and policy-making processes” demands it be open to the public. You are full of it Governor Carney. Your campaign promise and the part on your inaugural address about an open state government was a complete and utter lie. We both know what will happen in these meetings. Stop pretending you are a Governor and not a corporate puppet to the special interests that want to turn education and the workforce into their own molding. I am done listening to anything you have to say. With the stroke of a pen, in response to my article about transparency in your office, you have shown your true colors once and for all. Shame on you Governor Carney. You have destroyed FOIA in Delaware with this action by essentially excluding any of your Cabinet members on this charade of a Family Services Cabinet Council. They can cite executive privilege in any FOIA request by stating it is tied to the activities of this council. And with one line on this, you have made damn sure you can invite anyone to the party and protect them as well with no oversight or transparency whatsoever: “…and such others as the Governor shall invite.” But we will NEVER know who those others are, will we. Open government my ass. Dictatorship is more like it.