ALEC - AGs Request (Office of the Attorney General - Florida)

Alex Richardson filed this request with the Office of the Attorney General - Florida of Florida.
Est. Completion None
Status
Partially Completed

Communications

From: Alex Richardson

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to Florida's Sunshine Law (Fla. Stat. secs. 119.01 to 119.15 (1995)), I hereby request the following records:

- All communications between members of this office and employees or representatives of the American Legislative Exchange Council.
- All communications containing the keywords "ALEC" or "American Legislative Exchange Council".
- Any files or documents attached to the above communications.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I would request your response within ten (10) business days.

Sincerely,

Alex Richardson

From: Leslie Jacobs

May 11, 2015

Mr. Alex Richardson
Via email requests@muckrock.com

Dear Mr. Richardson:

This will respond to your May 8, 2015 fax in which, pursuant to Ch. 119,
F.S., you make the following request for public records:

1. All communications between members of this office and employees or
representatives of the American Legislative Exchange Council
2. All communications containing the keywords “ALEC” or “American
Legislative Exchange Council”
3. Any files or documents attached to the above communications.

This letter will serve as an acknowledgement of your request and advise
that a search of archived emails using the keywords you provided has
yielded over 4500 documents. Many of these records may not be responsive,
given that fact that Alec is a given name, and it will take considerable
time to review the files and redact any confidential or exempt information.
It is estimated that it will take 69 hours to accomplish the review.
Please advise if you wish to modify your request to narrow the scope of the
search.

If you wish to receive a copy of these records, please remit a check in the
amount of $985.32 made payable to the Department of Legal Affairs (No
credit cards or C.O.D.) to cover the cost of review and redaction. You may
send the check to my attention at the following address: PL 01, The
Capitol, 400 South Monroe Street, Tallahassee, FL 32399-0150. Once payment
has been received, we will begin processing your request.

Please note that if our office does not receive a response within thirty
(30) days from the date of this letter, we will close your request as
non-responsive. Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not
hesitate to contact our office at 850-245-0140.

Sincerely,

Leslie Jacobs
Office of the Attorney General
PL 01, The Capitol
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1050
(850) 245-0192(o)
(850) 487-2564 (f)

From: Alex Richardson

Dear Leslie Jacobs,

Thank you for the quick response. I am open to narrowing the search if necessary. To begin with, is it possible for you to conduct a case sensitive search? This would allow you to search only for 'ALEC' and avoid terms like 'Alec'.

Additionally, I would like to request a waiver of fees for this request since the disclosure of the information I seek is not at all in my commercial interest, and is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of the relationship between the state AG and a well known lobbying entity, making the disclosure a matter of public interest. This information will be published on a news media website (MuckRock) and made available to readers without charge.

Thank you,
Alex Richardson

From: Leslie Jacobs

May 13, 2015

Mr. Alex Richardson
Via email requests@muckrock.com

Dear Mr. Richardson:

This letter is in regard to your May 12, 2015 fax in which you respond to
our fees letter for public records dated May 11, 2015. In response to your
question about whether we have the capability to search a term using only
upper case letters, the answer is no. Our search will produce all records
with the word “ALEC” regardless of the case of the word. The searches you
requested resulted in an excess of 4500 documents, many of which may not be
responsive to your request. You may wish to modify your request to limit
the number of documents that need to be reviewed.

With regard to your request for a waiver of fees, the Office of the
Attorney General charges the fees set forth in Section 119.07(4)(d), F.S.
for the review and redaction of records. If you wish to receive a copy of
these records rather than revise your request, please remit a check in the
amount of $985.32 made payable to the Department of Legal Affairs (No
credit cards or C.O.D.) to cover the cost of review and redaction. You may
send the check to my attention at the following address: PL 01, The
Capitol, 400 South Monroe Street, Tallahassee, FL 32399-0150. Once payment
has been received, we will begin processing your request.

Please note that if our office does not receive a response within thirty
(30) days from the date of this letter, we will close your request as
non-responsive. Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not
hesitate to contact our office at 850-245-0140.

Sincerely,

Leslie Jacobs
Public Records Coordinator
Office of the Attorney General
PL 01, The Capitol
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1050
(850) 245-0140(o)
(850) 487-2564 (f)

From: Alex Richardson

Hi again,

Alright, fair enough. I'm going to more significantly narrow my search in that case.

- Your search may be limited to the period between Jan. 4, 2011, and the present (to keep things within one AG's tenure - I believe this is when Pam Bondi assumed the position).

- I would like all electronic communications between the office of the AG and any email domain ending "@ALEC.org".

- I would like all electronic communications containing the keyword "American Legislative Exchange Council".

Sorry for all the back and forth. Let's see if this narrows things down enough. I'm taking a rather broad strokes approach to this, but I've had success working with other AGs around the country getting things to a mutually workable level.

Best,
Alex Richardson

From: Office of the Attorney General - Florida

A cover letter granting the request and outlining any exempted materials, if any.

From: Office of the Attorney General - Florida

A first set of responsive documents from the agency, with more to be sent at a specified date.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 8, 2015. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: Leslie Jacobs

June 3, 2015

Mr. Alex Richardson
Via email requests@muckrock.com

Dear Mr. Richardson:

This will respond to your May 9, 2015 in which, pursuant to Ch. 119, F.S.,
you make the following request for public records:

1. all electronic communications from January 4, 2011 through the
present between the Office of the Attorney General and any email
domain ending in @ALEC.org; and
2. all electronic communication between January 4, 2011 and the present
containing the keywords “American Legislative Exchange Council.

A search of our email database has produced public records responsive to
your request. The records responsive to item 1 above were mailed today to
the address in your original email. With respect to your second request,
the search using the term you provided has resulted in 5641 pages of
records. It will require 17.3 hours of staff time to review and redact
these documents at an hourly rate of $16.11.

If you wish to receive a copy of these records, please remit a check in the
amount of $278.70 made payable to the Department of Legal Affairs (No
credit cards or C.O.D.) to cover the cost of reviewing the records. You
may send the check to my attention at the following address: PL 01, The
Capitol, 400 South Monroe Street, Tallahassee, FL 32399-0150. Once payment
has been received, we will begin processing your request.

Please note that if our office does not receive a response within thirty
(30) days from the date of this letter, we will close your request as
non-responsive. Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not
hesitate to contact our office at 850-245-0140.
Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to
contact our office at 850-245-0140.

Sincerely,

Leslie Jacobs
Public Records Coordinator
Office of the Attorney General
PL 01, The Capitol
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1050
(850) 245-0140(o)
(850) 487-2564 (f)

From: requests@muckrock.com
To: Leslie.Jacobs@myfloridalegal.com
Date: 06/03/2015 05:00 AM
Subject: RE: Freedom of Information Request: ALEC - AGs Request (Office
of the Attorney General - Florida)

June 3, 2015
Office of the Attorney General - Florida
General Counsel
Office of the Attorney General
The Capitol
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1050

This is a follow up to a previous request:

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request,
copied below, and originally submitted on May 8, 2015. Please let me know
when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is
needed.

Thank you for your help.

---
On May 19, 2015:
Hi again,

Alright, fair enough. I'm going to more significantly narrow my search in
that case.

- Your search may be limited to the period between Jan. 4, 2011, and the
present (to keep things within one AG's tenure - I believe this is when Pam
Bondi assumed the position).

- I would like all electronic communications between the office of the AG
and any email domain ending "@ALEC.org".

- I would like all electronic communications containing the keyword
"American Legislative Exchange Council".

Sorry for all the back and forth. Let's see if this narrows things down
enough. I'm taking a rather broad strokes approach to this, but I've had
success working with other AGs around the country getting things to a
mutually workable level.

Best,
Alex Richardson
---
On May 13, 2015:
May 13, 2015

Mr. Alex Richardson
Via email requests@muckrock.com

Dear Mr. Richardson:

This letter is in regard to your May 12, 2015 fax in which you respond to
our fees letter for public records dated May 11, 2015. In response to your
question about whether we have the capability to search a term using only
upper case letters, the answer is no. Our search will produce all records
with the word “ALEC” regardless of the case of the word. The searches you
requested resulted in an excess of 4500 documents, many of which may not be
responsive to your request. You may wish to modify your request to limit
the number of documents that need to be reviewed.

With regard to your request for a waiver of fees, the Office of the
Attorney General charges the fees set forth in Section 119.07(4)(d), F.S.
for the review and redaction of records. If you wish to receive a copy of
these records rather than revise your request, please remit a check in the
amount of $985.32 made payable to the Department of Legal Affairs (No
credit cards or C.O.D.) to cover the cost of review and redaction. You may
send the check to my attention at the following address: PL 01, The
Capitol, 400 South Monroe Street, Tallahassee, FL 32399-0150. Once payment
has been received, we will begin processing your request.

Please note that if our office does not receive a response within thirty
(30) days from the date of this letter, we will close your request as
non-responsive. Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not
hesitate to contact our office at 850-245-0140.

Sincerely,

Leslie Jacobs
Public Records Coordinator
Office of the Attorney General
PL 01, The Capitol
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1050
(850) 245-0140(o)
(850) 487-2564 (f)
---
On May 12, 2015:
Dear Leslie Jacobs,

Thank you for the quick response. I am open to narrowing the search if
necessary. To begin with, is it possible for you to conduct a case
sensitive search? This would allow you to search only for 'ALEC' and avoid
terms like 'Alec'.

Additionally, I would like to request a waiver of fees for this request
since the disclosure of the information I seek is not at all in my
commercial interest, and is likely to contribute significantly to public
understanding of the relationship between the state AG and a well known
lobbying entity, making the disclosure a matter of public interest. This
information will be published on a news media website (MuckRock) and made
available to readers without charge.

Thank you,
Alex Richardson
---
On May 11, 2015:
May 11, 2015

Mr. Alex Richardson
Via email requests@muckrock.com

Dear Mr. Richardson:

This will respond to your May 8, 2015 fax in which, pursuant to Ch. 119,
F.S., you make the following request for public records:

1. All communications between members of this office and employees or
representatives of the American Legislative Exchange Council
2. All communications containing the keywords “ALEC” or “American
Legislative Exchange Council”
3. Any files or documents attached to the above communications.

This letter will serve as an acknowledgement of your request and advise
that a search of archived emails using the keywords you provided has
yielded over 4500 documents. Many of these records may not be responsive,
given that fact that Alec is a given name, and it will take considerable
time to review the files and redact any confidential or exempt information.
It is estimated that it will take 69 hours to accomplish the review.
Please advise if you wish to modify your request to narrow the scope of the
search.

If you wish to receive a copy of these records, please remit a check in the
amount of $985.32 made payable to the Department of Legal Affairs (No
credit cards or C.O.D.) to cover the cost of review and redaction. You may
send the check to my attention at the following address: PL 01, The
Capitol, 400 South Monroe Street, Tallahassee, FL 32399-0150. Once payment
has been received, we will begin processing your request.

Please note that if our office does not receive a response within thirty
(30) days from the date of this letter, we will close your request as
non-responsive. Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not
hesitate to contact our office at 850-245-0140.

Sincerely,

Leslie Jacobs
Office of the Attorney General
PL 01, The Capitol
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1050
(850) 245-0192(o)
(850) 487-2564 (f)
---
On May 8, 2015:
To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to Florida's Sunshine Law (Fla. Stat. secs. 119.01 to 119.15
(1995)), I hereby request the following records:

- All communications between members of this office and employees or
representatives of the American Legislative Exchange Council.
- All communications containing the keywords "ALEC" or "American
Legislative Exchange Council".
- Any files or documents attached to the above communications.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and
this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, I would be grateful if you would
inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would
prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available
or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I
would request your response within ten (10) business days.

Sincerely,

Alex Richardson

Filed via MuckRock.com
E-mail (Preferred): requests@muckrock.com

For mailed responses, please address (see note):
MuckRock News
DEPT MR 17853
PO Box 55819
Boston, MA 02205-5819

PLEASE NOTE the new address as well as the fact that improperly addressed
(i.e., with the requester's name rather than MuckRock News) requests might
be returned by the USPS as undeliverable.

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