Indiana lawmakers can keep emails with lobbyists private, court rules

(Sarah Welliver/The Elkhart Truth)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana lawmakers can keep private their email correspondence with lobbying groups and businesses under a ruling from the state Supreme Court.

The decision released Tuesday comes in a lawsuit from consumer advocacy groups seeking emails between Republican Rep. Eric Koch (kuk) of Bedford and utility companies about his unsuccessful push last year to cut payments for excess electricity generated by home solar power systems.

The court ruling says the General Assembly is covered by the state public records law, but ordering the release of the correspondence would violate the separation of powers between the legislative and judicial branches of government.

Legislative leaders argue they need to protect the privacy of correspondence between lawmakers and their constituents.

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