FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Susan Cogswell and Thomas Scoville,
Complainants
against Docket #FIC 1998-074
Corporation Counsel, City of Torrington,
and City of Torrington,
Respondents July 22, 1998
	The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on April 22, 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.  The Commission takes administrative notice of the final decision in contested 
case docket #FIC 1997-041, Mahlon C. Sabo v. Corporation Counsel, City of Torrington; 
Board of Public Safety, City of Torrington; and City of Torrington, (hereinafter “FIC 
1997-041”).
	3.  On October 24, 1997, the Commission issued the final decision in FIC 1997-
041 ordering the respondents to provide the complainant Sabo with a copy of a report 
referred to as “Mr. Glen Coe’s investigative report in the matter of City of Torrington v. 
Chief Mahlon C. Sabo” (hereinafter “report”).
	4.  It is found that by letters dated February 9, 1998, the complainants requested 
that the respondent corporation counsel and Glen Coe provide them with a copy of the 
report.
	5.  It is found that the respondent corporation counsel denied the complainants’ 
request by letter dated February 13, 1998, informing the complainants that the report no 
longer existed.  He indicated that the Commission’s final decision ordered disclosure of 
the report to Sabo, the complainant in FIC 1997-041, and that as a part of an agreement 
reached with the City of Torrington (hereinafter “city”), Sabo had relinquished all rights 
that he had to the report.
	6.  Having failed to receive a copy of the report the complainants, by letter dated 
March 16, 1998 and filed with the Commission on March 19, 1998, appealed to the 
Commission alleging that the respondents violated the Freedom of Information (“FOI”) 
Act by failing to provide them with a copy of the report and destroying the report.
	7.  In finding 7 of the final decision in FIC 1997-041, the Commission found that: 
“[T]he requested report is a public record within the meaning of 1-18a(d), G.S.”
	8.  It is found that in settlement of their differences the city and Sabo reached an 
agreement on or about November 24, 1997, whereby Sabo agreed to relinquish his right 
to a copy of the report and the city decided not to appeal the Commission’s final decision 
in FIC 1997-041.
	9.  It is found that following the agreement described in paragraph 8, above, Coe, 
who had the report on his computer, made minor revisions to it.
	10.  It is found that the report, in the form ordered disclosed to Sabo by the 
Commission, no longer exists.
	11.  The complainants contend that they have been trying to get a copy of the 
report since November 1997 and that they are entitled to a copy of such report because it 
was found to be a “public record”, and should not have been destroyed.  The respondents 
contend that the Commission’s order of disclosure was specific to Sabo, and Sabo 
relinquished his right to the report.
	12.  Section 1-19(a), G.S., provides in relevant part:
Each such agency shall keep and maintain all public 
records in its custody at its regular office or place of 
business in an accessible place and, if there is no such 
office or place of business, the public records pertaining to 
such agency shall be kept in the office of the clerk of the 
political subdivision in which such public agency is located 
or of the Secretary of the State, as the case may be.
	13.  It is found that the respondents failed to keep and maintain the report in 
accordance with the requirements of 1-19(a), G.S.
	14.  It is therefore, concluded that the respondents violated 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 respondents shall forthwith use their best efforts to either a)  locate a hard 
copy of the report, which attorney Coe testified at the hearing existed in November 1997, 
at the time he intended to provide such hard copy to the city’s Board of Safety or b)  
reconstruct the report.  The respondents shall forthwith provide the complainants with 
either a copy of the hard copy located, or a copy of the reconstructed report.
	2.  The Commission suggests that the respondents consult with the state’s Public 
Records Administrator for guidance on the retention and destruction of public records.
	3.  Henceforth, the respondents shall strictly comply with 1-19(a), G.S.
 
  
 
	Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular 
meeting of July 22, 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:
Susan F. Cogswell
204 Essex Court
Torrington, CT 06790
Thomas Scoville
356 Westside Lane
Torrington, CT 06790
Corporation Counsel, City of Torrington, and City of Torrington
c/o Atty. Albert G. Vasko
Corporation Counsel
City of Torrington
140 Main Street
Torrington, CT 06790-5245

__________________________
Doris V. Luetjen
Acting Clerk of the Commission




FIC1998-074/FD/tcg/07291998