Open records

Since the subject of emails sent and received by public employees is in the news again, this is a good time for Local 243 members to review the MATC policies about archiving email and voicemail records. The following questions and answers are from an August 20, 2009 “Top 10” FAQs—UNIFIED COMMUNCATION document posted on the MATC-Madison website. The complete document is available as a PDF.

3. I’ve heard that MATC has a duty to archive email and voicemail messages. Is this true?

Yes, this is true. Federal and State laws require MATC to archive employee communications for a variety of purposes, including compliance with the State Open Records Law and Federal and State litigation-related records retention rules.

4. So, what is archived and for how long?

MATC email and voicemail records are retained in the MATC archive for 7 years. State law requires MATC to retain public records for 7 years. Emails are considered electronic records and therefore are subject to the 7-year retention rule. Because of the functionality of the unified system where email and voicemail can be used together in the same transaction, voicemail also takes the form of an electronic record subject to the 7-year archive period.

[click to continue…]