Worcester Police claims it will take 15 minutes to “review and redact” each of its emails with the Trump campaign

After an initial estimate of a few hundred dollars, WPD claims it “the sensitive nature of the emails” necessitates $9000 in processing fees

Written by Caitlin Russell
Edited by JPat Brown

In response to a request for emails between Donald J. Trump Inc. and the the Worcester Police Department, the department said it would cost over $800, citing the sizable task of separating the police officers’ emails from those of other city employees who communicated with the campaign.

As a result, I filed another request seeking emails specifically between current employees of Worcester PD and the Trump campaign, which the department estimates will cost $350 …

disproving the department’s contention that there was no was to separate the police emails from the other city employees’ correspondence. One could argue that any police officer couldn’t be expected to know that, but the Technical Services Department should.

Before tweaking the request and filing it a third time, I asked for all 1,435 emails - sure, it could just be a bunch of MAGA themed spam, but that spam is public spam.

The department responded that “due to the sensitive nature of the emails” it will take 15 minutes to review and redact each email, bringing the cost to $8971.75.

I appealed the fee to the Massachusetts Supervisor of Records (SPR) office, which led to the department finding the fastest reader they have on staff - reducing the time it would take to review and redact each email down to ten minutes, for a totally reasonable quote of … $6,071.75.

After filing another appeal, the SPR agreed that ten minutes per email might be a bit excessive …

and ordered the department to respond within 10 days …

But so far, Worcester PD has not offered a new fee estimate, reasonable or otherwise. We’ll keep you posted.


Image via Worcester Police