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Treasury is told to give network bailout records

Associated Press / February 21, 2009
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WASHINGTON - A federal judge has ordered the Treasury Department to give the Fox Business Network records about how the agency spent billions in bailout money.

The network filed requests under The Freedom of Information Act for records related to the funds spent on American International Group, the Bank of New York Mellon, and Citigroup. The network specifically asked the department to identify the troubled assets purchased, any collateral extended, and any restrictions placed on the financial institutions for their participation in this program.

US District Judge Richard Holwell ruled yesterday the Treasury must comply with the request by March 23.

Kevin Magee, Fox News executive vice president, responded in a statement that the network "believes it's important to hold the government accountable, especially for use of the bailout funds during this time of steep economic crisis." Fox filed the requests more than three months ago, with a request for expedited processing. It filed suit on Dec. 18, saying that the department had not responded other than to confirm that it received the requests.

Treasury spokesman Andrew Williams said the department has posted all financial stability contracts on the Internet so taxpayers can see how the money is being spent.

He said the department has already given Fox more than 1,200 pages of requested documents and "will continue to do so on a rolling basis."

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