In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION


Robert L. Silvestri and AFSCME Local 387,




against Docket #FIC 87-247


Personnel Officer, State of Connecticut Correctional Center at Cheshire,


Respondent January 13, 1988


The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on September 28, 1987, at which time the complainants and the respondent appeared, stipulated to certain facts and presented testimony, exhibits and argument on the complaint.


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


1. The respondent is a public agency within the meaning of 1-18a(a), G.S.


2. By letter dated August 3, 1987, the complainants made a request of the respondent for "any and all documents that establish the policy & procedure relative to overtime, including, but not limited to, general letters and/or administrative directives."


3. By letter of complaint filed with the Commission on August 31, 1987, the complainants appealed the respondent's failure to provide the requested records.


4. In response to the complainants' request the respondent conducted a search of his files containing general letters and administrative directives, which files are indexed by topic.


5. In a letter dated September 8, 1987, the respondent informed the complainants that there were no administrative directives on overtime, that the subject was covered in the NP4 Contract, Article 15 and that there was only one "general letter" concerning overtime, a copy of which was attached. The respondent further stated that the complainants' request for "any and all documents" was too vague to comply with further.


Docket #FIC 87-247 Page Two


6. The respondent concedes that many documents other than the ones provided or referred to may contain references to overtime or overtime policies. Such documents are not, however, indexed in a way which would make it possible to locate such references short of examining each one. Grievances, for example, are filed chronologically.


7. It is found that the respondent has offered the complainants access to his files to allow them to locate the documents in which they have an interest. The complainants have rejected the respondent's offer on the ground that the respondent has direct knowledge of the contents of his files and could more easily conduct the search.


8. It is found that the satisfaction of the complainants' request would require research by the respondent, which research is not required by any provision of the Freedom of Information Act.


9. It is further found that the direct access to files offered by the respondent would allow the complainants to inspect or receive copies of any of the requested documents.


10. It is concluded that the respondent's September 8, 1987, response to the complainants' request did not violate 1-15 or 1-19(a), G.S.


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


1. The complaint is hereby dismissed.


Approved by order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of January 13, 1988.



Catherine H. Lynch

Acting Clerk of the Commission