In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION


Michael Selvaggi and Monument Setting Company, Inc.


against Docket #FIC 89-66


Ronald W. Owens, Stratford Town Manager and Michael Spivak, Stratford Town Engineer


Respondent August 23, 1989


The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on July 3, 1989, at which time the complainants and the respondents 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 and conclusions of law are reached:


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


2. By letter dated January 19, 1989 to the respondent town manager, the complainants requested copies of: (a) the binding agreements for the Feasibility Study for the Academy Hill Monument Restoration and all related records including financial records; and (b) a copy of the product of that contract with all related documentation.


3. Having failed to receive a response as of February 21, 1989, the complainants filed an appeal to this Commission on February 22, 1989.


4. It is found that the respondent town manager referred the complainants' request to the respondent town engineer, who was in possession of the documents relating to the Academy Hill Monument Restoration.


5. It is found that at the time of the complainants' request, there was a feasibility study being conducted by Carol Grissom as well as an earlier completed feasibility study by Fletcher-Thompson, and that some confusion existed concerning which feasibility study documents were sought by the complainants and whether any documents had been forwarded to the complainants by the respondents.


Docket #FIC 89-66 Page 2


6. It is found that in order to eliminate the confusion, the respondents arranged for the complainants to meet at the town hall to inspect all files of the respondent town engineer and to designate which items the complainants wished to have copied.


7. It is found that as a result of the meeting referred to in finding 6, above, the complainants were given access to all information they requested with the exception of a requested computer printout for the special checking account established for the monument restoration project.


8. It is found that no computerized accounting for the project in issue exists, although copies of cancelled checks concerning this project are contained in the files of the respondent town engineer, which files were made available to the complainants.


9. It is found that although there was a delay of unusual length from the time of the complainants' request to the time of the complainants' receipt of requested documentation, this delay was caused by unfortunate circumstances surrounding the respondents' efforts to comply in good faith with the complainants' request.


10. Under the circumstances presented, it is concluded that there is no reason to grant relief to the complainants in this case.


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 August 23, 1989.



Tina C. Frappier

Acting Clerk of the Commission