FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION

OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

 

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION

 

Housing Authority of the City of New Haven,

 

Complainant,

 

against Docket #FIC 87-227

 

Executive Director, Commission on Equal Opportunities of the City of New Haven and Commission on Equal Opportunities of the City of New Haven,

 

Respondents February 28, 1988

 

The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on September 4, 1987, at which time the complainant and the respondent director appeared, stipulated to certain facts and presented testimony, exhibits and argument on the complaint.

 

After consideration of the entire record, the following facts are found:

 

1. The respondents are public agencies within the meaning of 1-18a(a), G.S.

 

2. On July 6, 1987, the complainant requested copies of complaints and papers showing the disposition of complaints received by the respondent commission for the time period from January 1, 1983 to December 31, 1986.

 

3. On July 10, 1987, the respondent director advised the complainant that the request for records was being reviewed by counsel.

 

4. The complainant filed a complaint with this Commission on or about August 3, 1987, alleging the failure of the respondent commission to provide the records, and requesting the maximum civil penalty.

 

5. At hearing, the respondent director agreed to provide the complainant with most of the requested records and the complainant agreed to pay the costs of $.25 per page.

 

Docket #FIC 87-227 page two

 

6. The respondent commission withheld the requested records in its complaint entitled Commission on Economic Opportunity v. YMCA, alleging that the complaint and related records were exempt from disclosure under the New Haven Equal Opportunities Ordinance at 12 1/2-6(e) of the New Haven Code.

 

7. It is found that 1-19(a), G.S. provides that copies of all public records shall be promptly available to the public except as otherwise provided by federal law or state statute.

 

8. It is found that the specific ordinance cited by the respondent director does not supersede the open records requirements of 1-19(a), G.S.

 

9. It is found that the respondent director failed to prove that the complaint and related records in Commission on Economic Opportunity v. YMCA are exempt from dislosure under 1-19(a), G.S.

 

10. It is found that the respondent commission failed to provide the complainant with the requested records promptly as required by 1-15, G.S.

 

11. It is found under the facts of this case that a civil penalty is not warranted.

 

The following order by the Commission is hereby recommended on the basis of the record concerning the above-captioned complaint:

 

1. Henceforth, the respondents shall provide copies of records promptly in accordance with the requirements of 1-15, G.S.

 

2. The respondents shall provide the complainant with copies of the records concerning the complaint in Commission on Economic Opportunity v. YMCA, which would show the complaint and any disposition thereof within thirty days of the mailing of this decision.

 

Approved by order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of February 24, 1988.

 

 

Catherine H. Lynch

Acting Clerk of the Commission