The release of a confidential report by any government employee or agency is a startling and alarming incident of a breach of the public’s trust. When the report is additionally bound by confidential guarantees pertaining to individual personnel rights it becomes even more onerous when that confidentially is breached. When it becomes obvious that the release of a part of a report (out of context) is being used unfairly to besmirch the reputation of a political candidate within weeks of an election it translates from illicit to illegal to immoral. In what might best be described as an example of “yellow journalism” this report has been displayed as front page sensationalism and indicative of a failure of the media to question and police its sources for full disclosure of their motives. Therefore, it is imperative upon me to demand a full investigation of this affair from the Attorney General’s office with full public disclosure of the principals involved and seeking legal remedies. I am circulating this press advisory and copy of the letter to Matt Denn from Rep. Kim Williams and myself for your perusal. Please feel free to post and circulate as you choose.
For immediate release:
August 20, 2018
State Lawmakers Petition Attorney General to Investigate Leaking of Confidential Report
State Representative John Kowalko (25th District) and State Representative Kim Williams (19th District) announced that they had sent a formal request to Attorney General Matt Denn to open an investigation into the release of a “confidential” report titled as the “Investigation into Actions of the Chief Administrative Auditor.” This report commissioned by State Auditor Thomas Wagner from the firm of Grant Thornton has been considered in previous hearings and actions as confidential. Wagner’s own words stating “because this issue is still before the (Merit Employee Relations Board) I am restricted from saying anything” about the report further reinforces the reality that the report is confidential.
Representative Kowalko said, “I find it very troubling that this illicitly obtained document has been parsed and displayed on the front page of Delaware’s most widely circulated newspaper mere weeks before an election.”
Representative Williams said that, “It is our obligation as duly elected public servants who value honest and transparent government to demand an answer as to why a matter of such confidentiality has been distributed.”
The two lawmakers sent a formal letter today to the Attorney General asking for an immediate investigation into how the confidential report was acquired by the News Journal and further requesting that the investigation reveal any and all sources that accessed and/or communicated this report and that any charges so merited be brought against the party/parties involved. The letter to Attorney General Denn is attached.
Representative John Kowalko: (302) 547-9351
Representative Kim Williams: (302) 559-7386
Letter to Attorney General Matt Denn:Davies Report AG Letter