Home / The Lit Drop /

Kineavy takes leave of absence from City Hall

Embroiled in a controversy over deleted City Hall emails, a top aide to Mayor Thomas Menino requested and received an unpaid leave of absence from his job.

Menino said in a statement Tuesday night that the administration would honor the request of Michael Kineavy, chief of policy and planning, to take the leave.

"It is unfortunate that these things happen during political times but we hope this time will allow Michael to clear his name," Menino said. "I appreciate tremendously Michael’s dedicated service to Boston and this administration. The city will continue to seek out information of any deleted items from within Michael’s computers and will continue to work in cooperation with the Secretary of State’s Office in this effort."

The move comes as City Hall officials discovered a second computer that Kineavy had been using, but had replaced earlier this year and then promptly forgot about it.

The news led to some mockery on the Internet: "Mayoral aide only person on earth who can't recall getting a new computer at work," Universal Hub wrote, while Bostonist quipped in its headline, "Kineavy Pulls The Old Second Computer Trick."

Earlier Tuesday, it also led to Menino complaining to reporters and calling for the Waaahmbulance. "We have to get our word out," he said. "We're talking about housing. We're talking about making our streets safer. No one's listening to that. All they want to talk about are emails."

The hunt for the e-mails began after the Boston Globe made a public records request for the emails of Kineavy and other City Hall aides. But after the request turned up an unusually low amount of emails, Secretary of State William Galvin's office got involved, taking the computer and directing a computer forensics company to retrieve emails that Kineavy deleted and then apparently deleted again. Deleting the emails may be a violation of the state's public records law.

City Councillors At-Large Michael Flaherty and Sam Yoon, running together to topple Menino, have both called for Attorney General Martha Coakley to investigate.

Menino's office, which has maintained that no laws were broken and the emails contain no evidence of broken laws, says they will post all the emails that the Globe requested and received - 5,108 of them - will be posted on the city's website in coming days.

The mayor's full statement is below:

Late today Michael Kineavy sought permission to take an unpaid leave of absence from city government and the administration will honor his wishes. It is unfortunate that these things happen during political times but we hope this time will allow Michael to clear his name. I appreciate tremendously Michael’s dedicated service to Boston and this administration. The city will continue to seek out information of any deleted items from within Michael’s computers and will continue to work in cooperation with the Secretary of State’s Office in this effort. In an effort to be transparent in this process the city will continue to move forward with posting retrieved emails online and will continue to update as new information becomes available.

Comments

Flahertys type (struggling real estate agents and angry firefighters) do nothing to help out "there" neighborhood. Simply get involved now because they have a stake in Flaherty. Can see right through them. And why is Flaherty so scared of Kineavy? Take more time running your own campaign and less time pointing figures.

Menino signs ripped to shreds all up and down Neponset Ave. today. Funny, the Floon signs seemed to hold up just fine in all the wind. I'm sure no one had a "hand" in helping the Menino signs down. That's why I wouldn't vote for Flaherty. His people are the kind that go around ripping up signs and fleecing the real taxpayers. Say no to Southie!

Enough. It gets worse by the day. And Menino's answer? Send Kineavy to run his campaign. This goes to the top and Menino should go to. And if not, we will take him down on November 3rd. Vote Flaherty-Yoon.