US seeks to shield emails about emergency network

Submitted by LDieringer on Fri, 08/23/2013 - 11:47am

From Miami Herald:  IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The Department of Justice obtained temporary legal relief Tuesday to block the release of emails to and from an Iowa sheriff who serves on a federal board charged with building a high-speed broadband network for emergency responders.

Department lawyers requested an injunction in federal court in Des Moines to prevent Iowa's Story County from releasing Sheriff Paul Fitzgerald's emails to the news outlet Politico on Tuesday. In a batch of court filings, they argued the release could "seriously impede" plans for a single, interoperable network designed to resolve the communications problems that hampered responses to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorism attacks and other disasters.

Fitzgerald was appointed last year to serve on the board of FirstNet, which was created by Congress to develop and deploy the network and is housed in the Department of Commerce. ...

Politico asked Story County to release emails related to FirstNet that Fitzgerald sent and received through his county email.

U.S. District Judge James Gritzner approved a temporary restraining order Tuesday afternoon that blocks the records' release for 14 days.

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