FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

FINAL DECISION
Docket #FIC 1996-599
October 22, 1997

In the Matter of a Complaint by Lorraine Tirella, Complainant
against
Theodore Oczkowski, Chairman, Park & Recreation Commission, Town Of Oxford; Harold Olsen; Karin Burke; Robert Fitzgerald; Paul Mc Ginnis; Colleen Lundgren; Enio Pucci; Ken Rotman and Lorraine Tirella as members of the Park & Recreation Commission, Town of Oxford; and Park and Recreation Commission, Town of Oxford Respondents

The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on September 11, 1997, at which time the complainant and the respondents appeared, stipulated to certain facts and presented testimony, exhibits and argument on the complaint. The case caption was corrected to reflect all the members of the Park and Recreation Commission.

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 of complaint, dated December 23, 1996 and filed with the Commission on December 27, 1996, the complainant appealed alleging that the respondents violated the Freedom of Information ("FOI") Act by failing to comply with the Commission’s order in contested case docket #FIC 1995-404, Lorraine Tirella v. Chairman, Oxford Park and Recreation Commission and Oxford Park and Recreation Commission ("FIC 1995-404").

3. Specifically, the complainant alleges that the respondents failed to provide her with the summer playground records at issue in FIC 1995-404.

 

4. In her December 3, 1996 complaint, the complainant requested that the Commission impose civil penalties upon the respondents.

5. It is found that the records at issue in FIC 1995-404 were the July and August 1994 summer playground records, which records the Commission ordered the respondents to "[f]orthwith provide the complainant with a copy."

6. It is found that there are summer playground records responsive to the complainant’s request, and Commission order, in FIC 1995-404, that exist, which the respondents failed to provide to the complainant, specifically, advertisement records, invitation for application to the summer school program, attendance records and bills.

7. At the hearing on this matter, the respondents contended that in FIC 1995-404 the complainant indicated that she did not want any attendance records. However, it is found that the record in FIC 1995-404 does not support such contention.

8. In addition, the respondents contend that in a subsequent ruling of this Commission, docket #FIC 1996-087, Lorraine Tirella v. First Selectman, Town of Oxford and Town of Oxford, this Commission found that the respondents did not maintain any 1993 and 1994 daily summer playground records.

9. It is found however, that the respondents chairman and commission in this case were not respondents in FIC 1996-087, and the finding that the respondents did not maintain any 1993 and 1994 daily summer playground records, described in paragraph 8, above, was not made with respect to the respondents chairman and commission.

It is concluded that the respondents failed to comply with the Commission’s order in FIC 1995-404 by not providing the complainant with a copy of the records described in paragraph 6 of the findings, above.

It is further found that the apparent escalating hostility and intolerance between the complainant and the respondents has led to a significant breakdown in their communication, dialogue and willingness to cooperate with each other.

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

1. Forthwith, the respondents shall provide the complainant with a copy of the records described in paragraph 6 of the findings, above, without charge.

Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of October 22, 1997.

_________________________
Doris V. Luetjen
Acting Clerk of the Commission

PURSUANT TO SECTION 4-180(c), G.S., THE FOLLOWING ARE THE NAMES OF EACH PARTY AND THE MOST RECENT MAILING ADDRESS, PROVIDED TO THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION, OF THE PARTIES OR THEIR AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE.

THE PARTIES TO THIS CONTESTED CASE ARE:
Lorraine Tirella
11 Larkey Road
Oxford, CT 06478

Theodore Oczkowski, Chairman, Park & Recreation Commission, Town Of Oxford; Harold Olsen; Karin Burke; Robert Fitzgerald; Paul Mc Ginnis; Colleen Lundgren; Enio Pucci; Ken Rotman and Lorraine Tirella as members of the Park & Recreation Commission, Town of Oxford; and Park and Recreation Commission, Town of Oxford
c/o Dominick J. Thomas, Jr.
Town Counsel
315 Main Street
Derby, CT 06418

__________________________
Doris V. Luetjen
Acting Clerk of the Commission
FIC1996-599/FD/tcg/10221997