Six House leaders are pressing their demands for documents after a senior Environmental Protection Agency executive confirmed that Administrator Lisa Jackson has used a fake name and a secret email account while doing official business.
Arvin Ganesan, EPA’s associate administrator for congressional and intergovernmental affairs, told the committee in a Dec. 12, 2012, letter that a secret email account identified as “Richard Windsor” was actually used by Jackson. But Ganesan did not provide the committee with any of the documents it had requested on the issue in a Nov. 15, 2012, letter.
The new letter made public today renews the committee’s request for documents described in the November letter. Committee members are concerned that use of secret email accounts and fake names to conduct official business could hide their contents from public access via the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
The EPA’s Inspector-General announced on Dec. 13 that it has opened an investigation into the use of such email accounts by EPA employees. It is against federal record-keeping laws and regulations to use a private or secret email account or fake name to conduct official business.
“While we understand the need for a secondary account for management and communication purposes, your choice to use a false identity remains baffling,” said House Committee on Science, Space and Technology Chairman Ralph Hall, R-TX, and Rep. James Sensenbrenner, the panel’s vice-chairman, in a letter sent today to Jackson.