FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Ayla Kardestuncer and
Mansfield Common Sense,
Complainants
against Docket #FIC 1998-352
Commissioner, State of Connecticut,
Department of Environmental Protection,
Respondents May 12, 1999

        The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on February 17, 1999 at which time the complainants and the respondent 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 respondent is a public agency within the meaning of 1-18a(1), G.S.

        2. It is found that by letter dated October 13, 1998, the complainants requested that the respondent provide them with information concerning the Department of Environmental Protection’s ("DEP") investigation into the town of Mansfield’s landfill. Specifically, the complainants requested the following:

a. a copy of the written complaint;

b. the identity of the author of the complaint;

c. a copy of the written notes taken by the DEP employee who received and recorded the complaint, as well as the identity of such employee;

d. if the complaint was transmitted orally and no notes taken, a written explanation of why that was so; and

e. a copy of the relevant DEP regulations pertaining to the protocol of registering complaints of this nature with the DEP.

        3. It is found that by letter dated October 20, 1998 the respondent informed the complainants that it was in the process of searching its files to locate the requested records.

        4. It is also found that by letter dated November 2, 1998, the DEP’s Program and Policy Analyst informed the complainants that the DEP complaint was received orally and transmitted directly to the respondent commissioner. In addition, the November 2, 1998 letter indicated that no notes of such DEP complaint were created.

        5. The complainants, by letter dated November 4, 1998 and filed on November 9, 1998, appealed to the Commission alleging that the respondent violated the Freedom of Information ("FOI") Act.

        6. It is found, although extraordinary, that the respondent does not have any records of the DEP complaint that are responsive to the complainant’s request.

        7. It is further found that the respondent is not required under the FOI Act to create records that do not already exist, to satisfy inquiries of the complainants.

        8. Consequently, it is concluded that the respondent did not violate the FOI Act as alleged in the complaint.

 

        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 May 12, 1999.

 

_________________________

Melanie R. Balfour

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:

 

Ayla Kardestuncer and
Mansfield Common Sense
1641 Storrs Road
Storrs, CT 06268
Commissioner, State of
Connecticut, Department
of Environmental Protection
c/o Atty. Robert B. Teitelman
Assistant Attorney General
55 Elm Street, PO Box 120
Hartford, CT 06141-0120
 

 

__________________________

Melanie R. Balfour

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

FIC1998-352FD/mrb/05201999