Health chief requires FOIA from senator to release emails - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Health chief requires FOIA from senator to release emails

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Gov. Bruce Rauner's administration is requiring state lawmakers to jump through a public-records law hoop before turning over emails about a deadly Legionnaires' disease outbreak at the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy.

Illinois Public Health Director Dr. Nirav Shah (NEER'-uhv SHA') told a joint House-Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Wednesday that Sen. Tom Cullerton's request for communication surrounding the crisis that has led to the deaths of 13 residents and sickened dozens more is subject to the Freedom of Information Act .

He used an exemption for "overly broad" requests to deny the request from Cullerton. He invited the Villa Park Democrat and Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee chairman to narrow the request.

But no public body is obligated to follow FOIA. The law itself presumes that all government records are public.

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