FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Leonard S. Campbell,
Complainants
against Docket #FIC 1997-392
Mayor, Town of Plymouth; Chairman,
Plymouth Industrial and Development
Commission, Town of Plymouth; Plymouth
Industrial and Development Commission,
Town of Plymouth; and Town of Plymouth,
Respondents July 8, 1998
	The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on April 1, 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 September 22, 1997, the complainant requested that the 
respondent mayor provide him with a copy of “the Town of Plymouth Industrial & 
Development Commission’s Requisition for Payment to the CT Department of Economic 
Development for the period 4/1/91 to 4/30/97 for the Plymouth Industrial Park Phase III 
Project signed by you as the ‘Requesting Official’ together with all attached or associated 
documentation, any cover letters, all resubmittals by you or any other Plymouth officials 
and any & all D.E.D. responses to date.”  
	3.   By letter dated September 25, 1997, the respondent mayor informed the 
complainant that the information as requested did not exist.  
	4.   By letters dated October 31, 1997, the complainant requested that the 
respondents provide him with a copy of “the one-page, two sided Requisition for 
Payment application entitled ‘Connecticut Department of Economic Development, 865 
Brook St., Rocky Hill, CT 06067-3405, REQUISITION FOR PAYMENT’, that you 
signed as the ‘Requesting Official’ for the specified ‘Applicant: Plymouth Industrial & 
Development Commission’ of the “Address: 80 Main Street, Terryville, CT 06786’, with 
the ‘Name of Project: Plymouth Industrial Park Phase III’, Requisition ‘#1’, ‘Amount: 
$106,100.50’, for the period ‘From 4/1/91 to 4/30/97’ regarding ‘Actual disbursements to 
date: From 4-1-91 to 4-30-97’, which requisition was signed by you and submitted 
between the dates of April 7, 1997 and June 10, 1997 to the State of Connecticut 
Department of Economic and Community Development.  The complainant also requested 
any records submitted by the respondent commission with the requisition, as well as any 
responses received by the respondents from the State of Connecticut Department of 
Economic and Community Development.   
	5.   By letter dated November 25, 1997, the respondent town again informed the 
complainant that the information as requested did not exist, but provided the complainant 
with a copy of an application for $111,882.75 submitted on 8/4/97 to the State of 
Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development by the respondent 
commission which was signed by the respondent Mayor.  Such record indicates that the 
project name is Plymouth Industrial Park Phase III.   
	6.   By letter dated December 1, 1997, and filed on December 4, 1997, the 
complainant appealed to the Commission, alleging that the respondents violated the 
Freedom of Information (“FOI”) Act by denying him copies of the requested documents.  
	7.   It is found that, to the extent that they exist, the requested records are public 
records within the meaning of 1-18a(5), G.S. 
	8.   Section 1-19(a), G.S., provides in relevant part:
[e]xcept as otherwise provided by any federal law or state 
statute, all records maintained…by any public agency, 
whether or not such records are required by any law or by 
any rule or regulation, shall be public records and every 
person shall have the right to inspect such records promptly 
during regular office…hours or to receive a copy of such 
records… in accordance with the provisions of section 1-
15….
	9.   Section 1-15(a), G.S., provides in relevant part that:  
[a]ny person applying in writing shall receive, promptly 
upon request, a plain or certified copy of any public record.  
The fee for any copy provided in accordance with the [FOI] 
act…by [municipal] public agencies, as defined in section 
1-18a, shall not exceed fifty cents per page….
	10.  It is found that, after the complaint described in paragraph 6, above, was 
filed, Plymouth Comptroller Manual Gomes sent an undated memorandum to the 
complainant, enclosing a copy of a “Requisition for Payment” application, which record 
differs from the record described in paragraph 5, above.  Mr. Gomes also informed the 
complainant that a requisition #1 in the amount of $106,100.50 did not exist, and invited 
the complainant into the offices of the respondent to review the files at issue.
	11.  By letter dated February 5, 1998, Mr. Gomes informed the complainant that 
he did not understand which record the complainant sought to review and again invited 
the complainant to contact him or to inspect the respondent’s records.
	12.  It is found that the respondents had initially submitted a requisition to the 
state which was found to be incorrect and which had been returned to the respondents by 
the state.  It is further found that such requisition, including the attachments thereto, is 
the record which the complainant seeks by his requests described in paragraphs 2 and 4, 
above.  It is also found that no record exists which exactly conforms to such requests but 
that the complainant could not be expected to exactly describe the requested record.   
	13.  It is further found, however, that when the respondents finally offered the 
complainant opportunities to clarify his request, as described in paragraphs 10 and 11, 
above, the complainant did not accept such invitations.
	14.  It is further found that, at the hearing in this matter, the respondents offered 
to provide the complainant with the records he seeks. 
	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.  
	2.  The Commission reminds the respondents that providing assistance to the 
public with respect to inspection of public records can in many instances avoid costly and 
needless hearings at this Commission.  In this case, such a hearing could have been 
avoided if the respondent mayor provided such assistance when he first received the 
complainant’s request, rather than deny such request out of hand.  In this regard, the 
Commission urges all parties to communicate openly with each other with respect to 
future requests under the FOI Act.

	Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular 
meeting of July 8, 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:
Leonard S. Campbell
73 Highland Avenue
Torrington, CT 06790
Mayor, Town of Plymouth; Chairman, Plymouth Industrial and Development 
Commission, Town of Plymouth; Plymouth Industrial and Development Commission, 
Town of Plymouth; and Town of Plymouth
c/o Manuel Gomes
Town Hall
80 Main Street
Terryville, CT 06786
Town of Plymouth
c/o Atty. Bruce A. Chadwick
Shipman and Goodwin
One American Row
Hartford, CT 06103-2819

__________________________
Doris V. Luetjen
Acting Clerk of the Commission




FIC1997-392/FD/tcg/07141998