As a result of a March 19, 2010 request from the New Jersey Libertarian Party's Open Government Advocacy Project (OGAP), the City of Clifton has assigned official "cliftonnj.org" e-mail addresses to Mayor and City Council members. Previously, the Mayor and Council were using their personal e-mail (e.g. Yahoo or Gmail) addresses for City business.

This is a concern because e-mails sent from or received by a personal account might be lost or accidentally (or intentionally) deleted making them unavailable to a citizen who requests them. But, e-mails sent or received by an official "cliftonnj.org" e-mail address are permanently retained and archived on the City's server and will be available to future OPRA requestors even if the author and recipient delete them from their computers.

This issue with Clifton is not fully resolved because the City has not yet established a policy requiring that only the official e-mail address be used for official business. The OGAP wrote to the City Council today requesting that they adopt such a policy. All of my correspondence with Clifton is published on line.

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