VT Digger: Responding to records release order, AG says there are no records

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by Elizabeth Hewitt
VT Digger

After fighting for a year not to release documents to a Washington-based nonprofit, the Vermont attorney general’s office now says there are no relevant records.

Chief Assistant Attorney General Bill Griffin responded late Monday to a July court order that the state turn over records relevant to a request by the Energy and Environment Legal Institute. The organization sought information related to a potential probe of Exxon Mobil.

“Our search did not identify any records responsive to your request,” Griffin wrote.

The letter surprised Matthew Hardin, lawyer for the organization, who described it as an “incoherent response.”

For about a year, the attorney general’s office argued it was not obligated to turn over records, Hardin said. Then the office announced it didn’t have any records to release.

“It just doesn’t make sense,” Hardin said.

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