Santa Monica, CA --- The California Highway Patrol has refused a Public Records Act request to disclose the cost to taxpayers of providing security for Governor Schwarzenegger, said the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights (FTCR) today. The governor now has responsibility to disclose the information said FTCR, which expects a response today to a similar Public Records Act request to the governor's office.
The Schwarzenegger administration has told the media that it will make the cost of the governor's security public in response to a formal request.
"When the police refuse to tell the public how much taxpayer money is being spent to guard the governor, and claim reasons of state security, a police state mentality has developed in Sacramento. It is incumbent on Governor Schwarzenegger to reverse the CHP's obstructionism and make information about the cost of his security detail public immediately," said Carmen Balber, consumer advocate with FTCR.
The CHP's refusal letter claims that costs of the governor's CHP detail are not public "for reasons of security." However, the Public Records Act, Government Code Sec. 6254(f), allows law enforcement information to be withheld if it involves "records of intelligence information or security procedures," but does not exempt costs or expenditures of the CHP. FTCR's request asked for records identifying "costs associated with providing security" for the governor and his family, within California and on trips out of state, but did not request specific details regarding security procedures or operations.
Read the CHP refusal: http://www.arnoldwatch.org/political_reform/chp.pdf
Read the Public Records Act request: http://www.arnoldwatch.org/political_reform/chppra.pdf