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Texas AG Declines to Release Records that Request Early Help with Operation Jump

June 23, 2006

From: Asst. AG for Public Info
To: AG Open Records Div

On June 8, 2006, the Office of the Attorney General (“OAG”) received a written request for information from Greg Moses. A copy of the request is enclosed.

The OAG asserts that the responsive information is excepted from disclosure under the Public Information Act (“PIA”). Specifically, the OAG invokes all of the exceptions provided by, and the exceptions incorporated into, sections 552.101 through 552.147 or the PIA, including sections 552.101, 552.103, 552.107, 552.108 and 552.111. Pursuant to section 552.301(a) of the PIA, this letter is submitted in order to seek a decision as to whether the exceptions apply. To assist in your review, the OAG will provide a brief of written comments in support of these exceptions and the brief will be submitted not later than the 15th business day form the date the request was received.


Request for Public Information

June 8, 2006

…please provide the following documents related to a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) released by the Governor’s office June 4, 2006. By the term document I intend to reference both paper and electronic forms of communication, including pdf and email.

Background: a comment made by Guard Chief Gen. Blum in a May 16 press conference (posted at the DHS website) indicates that legal review of Operation Jump start was already underway with state Attorneys General.

Request: Please provide documents that indicate the earliest requests for involvement of the Texas Attorney General’s Office in the operation that has come to be known as Operation Jump Start.


POINTS OF LAW referenced by OAG

§ 552.101. EXCEPTION: CONFIDENTIAL
INFORMATION.
Information is excepted from the requirements of
Section 552.021 if it is information considered to be confidential by law, either constitutional, statutory, or by judicial decision.

§ 552.103. EXCEPTION: LITIGATION OR SETTLEMENT
NEGOTIATIONS INVOLVING THE STATE OR A POLITICAL SUBDIVISION.
(a) Information is excepted from the requirements of Section 552.021 if it is information relating to litigation of a civil or criminal nature to which the state or a political subdivision is or may be a party or to which an officer or employee of the state or a political
subdivision, as a consequence of the person’s office or employment, is or may be a party.
(b) For purposes of this section, the state or a political subdivision is considered to be a party to litigation of a criminal nature until the applicable statute of limitations has expired or until the defendant has exhausted all appellate and postconviction remedies in state and federal court.

(c) Information relating to litigation involving a
governmental body or an officer or employee of a governmental body is excepted from disclosure under Subsection (a) only if the litigation is pending or reasonably anticipated on the date that the requestor applies to the officer for public information for
access to or duplication of the information.

§ 552.107. EXCEPTION: CERTAIN LEGAL
MATTERS. Information is excepted from the requirements of Section
552.021 if:
(1) it is information that the attorney general or an
attorney of a political subdivision is prohibited from disclosing because of a duty to the client under the Texas Rules of Evidence or the Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct; or

(2) a court by order has prohibited disclosure of the
information.

§ 552.108. EXCEPTION: CERTAIN LAW ENFORCEMENT,
CORRECTIONS, AND PROSECUTORIAL INFORMATION..

(a) Information held by a law enforcement agency or prosecutor that deals with the detection, investigation, or prosecution of crime is excepted from the requirements of Section 552.021 if:

(1) release of the information would interfere with
the detection, investigation, or prosecution of crime;
(2) it is information that deals with the detection,
investigation, or prosecution of crime only in relation to an investigation that did not result in conviction or deferred adjudication;

(3) it is information relating to a threat against a
peace officer or detention officer collected or disseminated under Section 411.048; or

(4) it is information that:
(A) is prepared by an attorney representing the
state in anticipation of or in the course of preparing for criminal litigation; or

(B) reflects the mental impressions or legal
reasoning of an attorney representing the state.

(b) An internal record or notation of a law enforcement agency or prosecutor that is maintained for internal use in matters relating to law enforcement or prosecution is excepted from the requirements of Section 552.021 if:

(1) release of the internal record or notation would
interfere with law enforcement or prosecution;
(2) the internal record or notation relates to law
enforcement only in relation to an investigation that did not result in conviction or deferred adjudication; or
(3) the internal record or notation:

(A) is prepared by an attorney representing the
state in anticipation of or in the course of preparing for criminal litigation; or

(B) reflects the mental impressions or legal
reasoning of an attorney representing the state.

(c) This section does not except from the requirements of Section 552.021 information that is basic information about an arrested person, an arrest, or a crime.

§ 552.111. EXCEPTION: AGENCY MEMORANDA.

An interagency or intraagency memorandum or letter that would not be available by law to a party in litigation with the agency is excepted from the
requirements of Section 552.021.

By mopress

Writer, Editor, Educator, Lifelong Student

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