When an email was sent to city employees instructing them to delete potentially embarrassing emails and documents, it sent alarm through open government advocates and even with employee unions. The order could have been illegal, could have been part of a cover-up, or could have resulted in accidentally or illegally deleting protected documents. And now the Mayor has said that it was a mistake.

The email in question, which was sent by an employee in the planning department, threatened disciplinary action if the order was disobeyed. But after the union asked the district attorney and city attorney to investigate, the order was stayed.

From the L.A. Times:

The mayor of Anaheim said it was a “mistake” for planning officials to order employees to purge files and emails from their computers that might be unflattering to city leaders and local developers.

The warnings were sent to department staff last week, shortly after the online publication Voice of OC filed a Public Records Act request for communications between council members and the planning department.

Read the full article here.