New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said Thursday that he would meet with state lawmakers and other top officials to discuss revising the state's email storage policy, which now automatically deletes messages after 90 days.
The announcement came after a top aide to Attorney General Eric Schneiderman (D), who has had a tense relationship with Cuomo -- announced that his office would stop following the 90-day deletion policy and would develop a new one.
“Attorney General Schneiderman is committed to openness, transparency and restoring the trust of New Yorkers in their government,” Schneiderman's chief of staff, Micah Lasher, wrote in an email to the staff. “Consistent with that commitment, he has decided to suspend, effective immediately, the policy that was first put in place in the Attorney General’s office in 2007 of automatically deleting most office emails after 90 days. He has directed his Counsel to formulate, in short order, a new document retention policy.”
State lawmakers on Thursday introduced legislation that would retain emails of some state employees for at least seven years and subject members of the legislature to the Freedom of Information law.
State legislators have criticized the deletion policy, which has been unevenly enforced, saying it creates a lack of transparency. Cuomo's office said the policy was put in place by former Gov. Eliot Spitzer (D). Former Spitzer staffers have disputed that account.