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W.Va. officials won’t release oil shipment data

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — West Virginia officials on Wednesday formally refused to make public more detailed information provided by CSX Corp. about the company’s shipments of crude oil through communities in the state.

The state’s Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management deleted key details — the amounts, routes and frequency of crude oil shipments — from material provided to The Charleston Gazette in the agency’s formal response to a request filed under the Freedom of Information Act.

In a letter to the newspaper, Homeland Security Director Jimmy Gianato said those details contain “trade secrets or confidential locations” agency officials believes are exempt from public disclosure under the state FOIA. Gianato’s letter was dated Friday. A copy was emailed to the Gazette Wednesday morning.

The state’s response comes amid continued national controversy over increased rail shipments of crude oil and as debate continues about whether the shipment information — required by the Obama administration to be filed with state emergency response agencies — should be made available to citizens…

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