John Washburn takes public records seriously. Recently, the 45-year-old computer software tester from Wisconsin decided to take on Texas Gov. Rick Perry over his e-mail retention program -- or lack of one. But most e-mails have been defined as "transitory" material that can be deleted after a week. The policy started under Gov. George W. Bush and was never changed, according to Robert Black, Perry's press secretary. But Washburn has found out that record retention can be expensive. Washburn said the governor's office should store e-mails on a server, some of which can be dedicated to e-mails that are public records.
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