FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Richard A. Rutkowski,
Complainants
against Docket #FIC 1998-060
Mayor, Town of Berlin; Town
Council, Town of Berlin; and
Town of Berlin,
Respondents June 10, 1998
	The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on May 4, 1998, at 
which time the complainant 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(1), G.S. 
	2.   By letter dated February 27, 1998 and filed with the Commission on March 3, 
1998, the complainant alleged that the respondents violated the Freedom of Information 
Act (“FOI”) Act and Section 3-4 of Chapter 3 of the Berlin Town Charter by failing to 
provide written notification of the February 26, 1998 special meeting of the Berlin Town 
Council to one member of such council. 
	3.   Because the Commission lacks jurisdiction to consider alleged violations of 
municipal charters, it shall not further address that particular aspect of the complaint in 
this matter.  Thus, the only remaining issue relates to whether or not the respondents 
violated the FOI Act by declining to provide the written notification described in 
paragraph 2, above.  
	4.   It is found that the Berlin Town Council held a special meeting on February 
26, 1998 and that the notice of such meeting was timely filed and posted with the town 
clerk as required by the provisions of 1-21(a), G.S. 
	5.   Section1-21(a), G.S., further provides in relevant part that:
…such written notice [of a special meeting] shall be 
delivered to the usual place of abode of each member of the 
public agency so that the same is received prior to such 
special meeting.  The requirement of delivery of such 
written notice may be dispensed with as to any member 
who at or prior to the time the meeting convenes files with 
the clerk or secretary of the public agency a written waiver 
of delivery of such notice.  Such waiver may be given by 
telegram.  The requirement of delivery of such written 
notice may also be dispensed with as to any member who is 
actually present at the meeting at the time it convenes….
	6.   It is concluded that 1-21(a), G.S., confers upon individual members of public 
agencies the right to home delivery of written notice of special meetings.
	7.   It is found that Ida Ragazzi, the council member described in paragraph 2, 
above, was out of state during the week preceding the special meeting described in such 
paragraph.  It is further found that Councilor Ragazzi had actual, if not written, notice of 
such meeting more than twenty four hours prior to such meeting and that she in fact 
attended, and participated in, such meeting. 
	8.   It is further found that the respondent town council could have properly 
dispensed with the written notice requirement to Councilor Ragazzi under the facts 
presented, pursuant to 1-21(a), G.S.
	9.   Section 1-21i(c), G.S., in relevant part provides that:
[a]ny person who does not receive proper notice of any 
meeting of a public agency in accordance with the 
provisions of the [FOI] Act may appeal under the 
provisions of subsection (b) of this section….
	10.  Section 1-21i(b)(1), G.S., in relevant part provides that:
[a]ny person denied the right to inspect or copy records under section 1-19 
or wrongfully denied the right to attend any meeting of a public agency or 
denied any other right conferred by the [FOI] Act may appeal therefrom to 
the [FOI] Commission, by filing a notice of appeal with said 
commission….
	11.  It is found that the complainant is not a member of the Berlin Town Council.   
	12.  It is concluded that the complainant has not been denied any right conferred 
by 1-21i(c), G.S., or any other provision of the FOI Act and therefore has no basis upon 
which to appeal to this Commission pursuant to the provisions of 1-21i(b)(1), 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 for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. 


	Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular 
meeting of June 10, 1998.


_________________________
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:
Richard A. Rutkowski
154 Ridgewood Lane
Kensington, CT 06037
Mayor, Town of Berlin; Town Council, Town of Berlin; and Town of Berlin
c/o Atty. E. Timothy Sullivan, Jr.
Gaffrey, Kane, Reynolds, Sullivan, & Vollmer
1 Liberty Square
New Britain, CT 06051

__________________________
Doris V. Luetjen
Acting Clerk of the Commission




FIC1998-060/FD/tcg/06121998