Louisiana Attorney General Buddy Caldwell asked a Baton Rouge judge Wednesday to block Client Network Services Inc.’s public records requests in a dispute over CNSI’s loss of a $200 million state contract for processing Medicaid claims.
In a court filing, Caldwell’s staff told 19th Judicial District Judge Tim Kelley the records requests should not be granted because Caldwell “will soon impanel a special grand jury in East Baton Rouge Parish to hear testimony and review evidence.”
Lewis Unglesby, attorney for CNSI, said of the development: “We look forward to every opportunity we have in the courtrooms of Louisiana to show the value of our client’s services and the legitimacy of its contract.”
Kelley did not immediately schedule a hearing on Caldwell’s motion.
The Jindal administration canceled CNSI’s contract in March after a news report that a federal grand jury had subpoenaed documents related to the contract. State Department of Health and Hospitals Secretary Bruce Greenstein, a former CNSI vice president, resigned a week later.
On May 6, Maryland-based CNSI sued the Jindal administration, alleging “bad faith breach of contract” and financial damages. Corporate officials said in the lawsuit the firm had done nothing wrong to win the state contract and was fulfilling its contractual obligations properly before it was fired.
On Tuesday, CNSI asked Kelley to order the state to release records related to the contract dispute.
That prompted Caldwell’s motion Wednesday for a stay, or block, of CNSI’s records request.
The attorney general’s motion was filed with Kelley by Assistant Attorneys General Butch Wilson and David Caldwell. The pair told the judge CNSI was attempting “to obtain the identities of state employees who have provided evidence to attorney general investigators and who will be called to testify before the special grand jury investigating this matter.”