The Superior Court of Guam has ordered Attorney General Leevin Camacho to disclose the documents requested by Attorney Thomas J. Fisher pertaining to government employees' compensation.
The court's order was in response to a lawsuit filed by police officer Steve Topasna and 100 others, seeking seeking the implementation of double pay for employees who were required to work during the public health emergency period.
The requested documents include communications between the Office of the Attorney General and the Office of the Governor from March 2020 to May 2020 relating to employee pay and communications among employees of the OAG concerning payment of government of Guam employees. Those communications extend to communications on WhatsApp, Facebook, and other similar platforms.
"The AG must know that public records created on WhatsApp or similar forms of communications are subject to the Sunshine Reform Act. If government employees are conducting government business on WhatsApp or similar forms of communications, the public has the right to know and inspect these documents," said Fisher, who represents the plaintiffs.
"The OAG has admitted that government of Guam business is conducted on WhatsApp. In fact, the OAG responded to the Sunshine law request having reviewed and identified thousands of records but, provided only four-redacted pages of WhatsApp communications. If in this process we discover that employees have deleted or destroyed public records on WhatsApp or similar forms of communications, we intend to seek criminal and civil remedies."
The AG must comply with the order by 3 pm on July 2.