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Comic: Great moments in politics: Miller & Nixon

Pima County Supervisor Ally Miller continues to deny having used personal email accounts to conduct government business, although copies of emails proving otherwise have been turned over to the Pima County Attorney's Office. ... Read more»

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9 comments on this story

Jul 19, 2016, 6:21 pm
-3 +1

This is terrible reporting. County business is defined in the AZ statutes for County Supervisors. None of the e-mails that the Sentinel contends are company business is actually company business. I.E. If I send an e-mail to any County Supervisor with a simple question or set of questions and the Supervisor responds with a “to the best of my knowledge” type answer, does not constitute County business. If you want people to read your articles you should do some due diligence before making false accusation.

Jul 19, 2016, 9:00 pm
-0 +4

Sorry @Golfer, but you’re completely incorrect.

Every document produced by a government employee in connection with their duties is a record, and with the exception of a few strictly delineated types of records (privileged materials, papers covered by FERPA or HIPAA, etc.) all government records in Arizona are public records.

You may find the Arizona Attorney General’s Agency Handbook section on public records informative, as well as the Arizona Ombudsman’s Office’s website.

For some close reading, check out Title 39 and Title 41 of the Arizona Revised Statutes.

From the Ombudsman: “What are public records?

In most cases, anything created or received by a government agency or employee that relates to public business. This includes records created or received in the course of business (even if on personal computers). This includes all books, papers, maps, photographs or documentary materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, including prints or copies of such items produced or reproduced on film or electronic media made or received by any governmental agency in pursuance of law or in connection with the transaction of public business. A.R.S. 39-121.01(B) and 41-1350.”


“Are e-mails sent or received by public officials, public bodies, and government employees public record?

It depends. While the presumption is that everything created or received on office time with office equipment constitutes a public record, the nature and purpose of the document determine its status as a public record. The Supreme Court has recently concluded that purely personal e-mail, that has no relationship to official duties, is not automatically a public record just because it was on a government computer and e-mail system. That said, e-mails sent or received by a public official or public employee regarding public business constitute public records regardless of the e-mail account. This includes e-mails sent from or received by personal and other non-government e-mail systems or accounts.”

Jul 20, 2016, 8:09 am
-2 +1

@Dylan Smith
Once again the media twists the wording for their own benefit. I specifically said the e-mails were not County business. Never said they weren’t County records, they aren’t considered County Business per Title 11, Please Read Chapter 2, Article 4, Powers and Duties - http://www.azleg.gov/ArizonaRevisedStatutes.asp?Title=11
Again, the e-mails you have posted should not be construed as County Business. Records yes, County Business no.

Jul 20, 2016, 10:07 am
-0 +2


A public record is required to be promptly released under the law. If a record does not fit one of the narrow exemptions specifically laid out in the law, it is a public record. It’s just that simple; there’s no need to craft a new legal theory when the courts have been quite clear. Note that Title 11, covering counties, also includes provisions requiring public records to be open for public inspection, despite it not being the section of the law that specifically deals with public records.

Jul 20, 2016, 10:20 am
-2 +2

@Dylan Smith
I agree with you on public records. Why does the article start out talking about County business and then does not provide any e-mails where County business is being conducted? You are stuck on a tangent about records, but refuse to admit that the records show no County business being performed per the AZ statutes. If you are looking for illegal activities performed by Supervisors, look into some of the phone conversations made by the County Supervisors. Probably can’t do that as those records are probably not kept! That’s where the real illegal activities occur!

Jul 20, 2016, 11:04 am
-0 +3


When determining whether an email sent to or from a private email account is a public record, we must look at whether a government employee or official was communicating regarding their public position. If they were carrying out the business of the public, then it is a public record. See the Ombudsman’s description, above.

We’ve already been provided with a great many documents that were sent from public email accounts that were communications with constituents just as you described. That’s because those are public records and must be promptly released. If there are such records from a personal email account of an official or staffer, there are also public records.

Phone records, text messages and voicemails are also public records, yes.

Jul 20, 2016, 12:05 pm
-3 +1

@Dylan Smith
Yes, I’ve read the Ombudsman’s description and I agreed with you on that. The article was about breaking the law over County Business. What you are refusing to acknowledge is: What County Business is, why are you making up your own description? I’ve attached the AZ Statute links for you above but it is up to you to take the time to read it. Why not be fair and write an article on what County business is and where you feel the law was broken. I still think you are stuck on turning over public records and not on any law that was broken per County Business as your article states.

Jul 20, 2016, 6:42 pm
-0 +2

What do you expect from a pitiful station like KVOA?

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