Public Employees’ Private Emails Not Subject to Open Records Request

I wrote about Karen Schill v. Wisconsin Rapids School District in a previous article in the Municipal Alert – a citizen had made an open records request for private emails sent by public employees (a school district) on public computers. In a 5-2 decision, the Supreme Court ruled that private emails are not subject to open records requests even though they are sent using government computers (the appropriateness of the use of government computers for sending private emails was not an issue in this case). Essentially, the court said that government records are subject to the open meetings law, private emails are not because they are not “government business.”

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