Blogging Bayport Alameda

July 2, 2015

Ctl Alt Delete

Filed under: Alameda, Alameda-ish, City Council — Lauren Do @ 6:02 am

EBCitizen posted an interesting piece the other day about Fremont’s email retention policy which came under fire by Alameda County’s Grand Jury.   Excerpt:

An Alameda County grand jury report released Monday strongly faulted the City of Fremont for an email retention policy that subverts state transparency laws by deleting government emails after just 30 days. It also called for the city to completely overhaul its email policy.

Cities in the state must abide by a government code requiring emails to be retained at least two years. However, in Fremont, city officials and staff are allowed to label all unsaved emails as “preliminary drafts.” In addition, they are allowed to pick and choose which emails are saved or purged. If no designation is given, according to the grand jury report, they are automatically purged after 30 days.

As a reminder, this policy by Fremont was one that the City of Alameda was relying on a few years ago to justify not producing emails during a standard public records request.

Remember when then City Attorney Teresa Highsmith was telling everyone this:

The City’s other email system is the internal Groupwise system, and each Councilmember (including the Mayor) does has a City email address. Unlike the off-site Alameda Access system, the City of Alameda does not have the server space to retain the emails. Accordingly, the emails within the City’s Groupwise system are systematically and automatically purged by IT every 30 days; therefore, they are considered “drafts” and are exempt from disclosure pursuant to Govt. Code Section 6254(a).

At least now those of us were were saying “wow, that policy seems awfully lame” back then now have a definitive answer from the Grand Jury regarding a 30 day retention policy.  Although had I known that this was a topic the Grand Jury would have been willing to tackle I would have put in a complaint five years ago.

I’ll just add, one of these days I would love to be a part of a Grand Jury like this.  Not that I have the time, knowledge, or bandwidth right now, but it is one of my dorky dreams to do so.  Like when I retire or something.



  1. When did you speak at a council meeting in front of Mark’s own eyes? And where’s the video? And what did you say? And was it extemporaneous or contemporaneous?

    Comment by jack — July 2, 2015 @ 9:38 am

  2. A long time ago. On the City’s website somewhere. Alameda Landing: yay. It was neither, I’m a terrible public speaker.

    Comment by Lauren Do — July 2, 2015 @ 9:55 am

  3. How about digging it up so we can compare your performance with sister Trish’s?

    Comment by jack — July 2, 2015 @ 11:00 am

  4. Sure. I’ll get right on it.

    Comment by Lauren Do — July 2, 2015 @ 11:25 am

  5. Yes, yes. Please do, Do. After all, you have featured so many of the rest of us speaking at City meetings in BBA, without our knowledge or consent.

    I’ve found that public speaking takes practice. The more you do it, the better you get. Or at least you no longer care that you suck at it. If you’ve only done it once, you can’t know if you’re “terrible’ at anything.

    Jack, will you be in the Mayor’s Parade this year?

    Comment by vigi — July 2, 2015 @ 12:41 pm

  6. I find the comments that jack and vigi are making to be incredibly childish and disrespectful. You seem to have a seething anger and deep-seated resentment toward the author. You’re not adding to the conversation nor trying to make any kind of salient counterpoint. It’s really just rude to behave like this in a public forum. I’m surprised she engages with you.

    Comment by AJ — July 2, 2015 @ 2:27 pm

  7. AJ, please I beseech you to do yourself a great favour and kindly skip reading anything I write. I totally agree with you and am also totally surprised she engages with me.

    No Vigo, I sold all my parade autos.

    Comment by jack — July 2, 2015 @ 3:56 pm

  8. Scuse the Vigo, vigi this kindle fire doesn’t recognize your handle.

    Comment by jack — July 2, 2015 @ 3:59 pm

  9. ‘sOK, jack…have a happy fourth!

    Comment by vigi — July 2, 2015 @ 4:11 pm

  10. Ctl-alt-del is the name of a pretty fair beer at the craft beer place on Park Street. “Defcon 2” at the place on the point is excellent.

    Comment by Linda — July 2, 2015 @ 7:30 pm

  11. Defcon 2, and the view!!, Faction Brewery.

    Comment by John P. — July 3, 2015 @ 7:38 am

  12. 1. yes I was in chambers, but I can’t remember when or for what. That doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. vigi’s obsession with public speaking as some sort of proof one is worthy of an opinion is rather lame. I can’t blame anybody who doesn’t want to make the schlep and wait through all the other agenda items to get their three minutes.

    Comment by MI — July 4, 2015 @ 8:50 am

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