Virginia Democrats’ records request to cost $1,600-plus, McDonnell lawyers say

Gov. Bob McDonnell (R)’s lawyers notified the Democratic Party of Virginia late Friday that its Freedom of Information Act request for documents outlining the administration’s use of taxpayers dollars will cost $1,622.58. Oh, and the governor’s office wants a $1,000 deposit.

The Democratic party filed the request last month after The Washington Post reported that McDonnell has been using closed work groups for at least one of his commissions.

The request covered correspondence between McDonnell’s office and commission members and Attorney General Ken Cuccinell (R)’s office as well as any minutes or other records of the work groups’ meetings for any commission that uses them.

In a letter sent to the party’s executive director David Mills, McDonnell’s counselor Jasen Eige said some of the documents are exempt under Virginia law. He called the request one of the largest the office had ever seen.

“You have requested a great deal of records...that would require extensive searching and review by our office,’’ Eige wrote.

Brian Coy, a Democratic spokesman, said the party will review the bill and decide if it wants to pay. But he called it a “shame” that people have to go to such length and expense to find out how McDonnell is spending taxpayer dollars.

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