House Republicans call for investigation into data dumping and IPRA violations by CYFD and Lujan Grisham administration
Santa Fe, NM- Today, House Republicans responded to an investigative report published by Searchlight New Mexico that reveals state employees in the Children Youth and Families Department (CYFD) have been using an encrypted mobile app, in violation of public transparency laws: Searchlight New Mexico highlighted ongoing issues with the Children Youth and Families Department (CYFD) and Inspection of Public Records Act (IPRA) requests made by the publication.
“Hearing that CYFD is using an encrypted app to conveniently hide conversations and actions by government employees is the tip of the iceberg,” said House Republican Caucus Chair Rebecca Dow (TorC). “For an agency that is charged with protecting our most vulnerable populations to delete the very communications that could help aide in the reformation of that troubled department is unconscionable. This activity must cease immediately.”
The CYFD Secretary openly admits to using the encrypted communications, and regularly deleting the data, in violation of IPRA laws designed to foster transparency and trust in government.
“What we have seen over the past year is a government that has hidden itself away in a maze of virtual walls. For the leadership in any state agency to think that they can circumvent transparency by deleting public documents is a slap in the face to New Mexicans who have placed their trust in public service,” said House Republican Leader Jim Townsend (Artesia).
House Republicans today requested the Attorney General and State Auditor to immediately address the potential violations of New Mexico’s IPRA statute, and investigate how widespread use of encrypted communications and subsequent data dumping is within New Mexico’s government agencies. House Republicans also call on Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham to provide a report detailing whether her office staff and or cabinet level staff have been using data encryption and data dumping.
“These actions are shredding the trust we have built over the last several years when it comes to public transparency,” said House Republican Whip Rod Montoya (Farmington).