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Date set to hear Dann's lawsuit



Published: Thu, August 25, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



The suit will test how far the governor's executive protection blanket extends.

By JEFF ORTEGA

VINDICATOR STAFF WRITER

COLUMBUS -- The Ohio Supreme Court on Wednesday scheduled oral arguments for Nov. 9 in a lawsuit brought against Gov. Bob Taft by state Sen. Marc Dann of Liberty, D-32nd, seeking records from the governor in connection with a state investments scandal.

Dann's suit seeks all weekly memos dating to 1998 from the governor's office involving the Bureau of Workers' Compensation, the state's insurance fund for injured workers.

The BWC has lost about $300 million in various investments over the past few years, news reports say.

Taft's office has turned over several hundred pages of governor's office memoranda to Dann and his lawyers. Dann's lawyers, however, say some were redacted while as many as 267 memos may not have been provided.

Objective

Dann and his lawyers want to depose Taft, a Republican, and other current and former state officials in connection with the suit.

But Taft's lawyers have sought protection in the high court from depositions, claiming executive privilege.

According to Wednesday's high court ruling, both sides are to file briefs addressing whether the governor can claim executive privilege to prevent the disclosure of documents provided to the governor by his staff or other executive-branch officials.

Both sides are also to address whether the governor or other high-ranking officials can claim privilege to prevent depositions, the high-court ruling said.




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