Gov. Scott sued in public records lawsuit over private emails

Public documents didn't turn up in public records request from attorney


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida's governor acknowledged having a private email account, but denies he's using it for anything business-related. The case is just one of many thorns in the side of the governor from an attorney who has become his nemesis.

Gov. Rick Scott is being sued in a public records lawsuit over whether he and his staff are using private emails to conduct state business.

"I use the email account to email with family," said Scott.

An email from the account was forwarded to project Sunburst -- the state's public emails website -- concerning the search for a lieutenant governor in 2013.

"If anybody sends me an email to a private account I make sure I try to forward it to Sunburst, because I try not to use my personal email for anything," Scott said.

The reason this is all a problem is because the public documents didn't turn up in a public records request from attorney Steven Andrews.

"We just want to make sure that state agencies properly respond," said Andrews.

The email case is just one of many fights between Scott and Andrews, and it stems from a case about a land dispute near the governor's mansion.

Scott's administration wants to buy the land that Andrew's office is on and build a museum. A judge threw the case out in a victory for the trial lawyer.

But the feud started before the governor was even elected. Andrews' office served Scott a subpoena publicly before a press conference.

The attorney was donating to Scott's main opponents -- Democrat and Republican -- during the 2010 election.

A judge has sided with Andrews in the emails case for now. Google and Yahoo have been ordered to release who created private accounts for the governor and his executive office.