FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION

Jo Ann Kucejko,

 
  Complainant  
  against   Docket #FIC 2004-297

Superintendent of Schools, East

Windsor Public Schools,

 

 
  Respondent March 23, 2005
       

  

The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on November 8, 2004, at which time the complainant 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 1-200(1), G.S.

 

2.  It is found that, by e-mail dated June 7, 2004, the complainant requested that the chairman of the East Windsor Board of Education [hereinafter “board”] provide her with the opportunity to review individual responses to a staff survey regarding the performance of the superintendent of schools, which survey was conducted in April 2003 [hereinafter “the requested records”]. 

 

3.  It is found that, by e-mail dated June 9, 2004, the complainant requested that two board members who had worked with the requested records provide her with access to such records, or in the alternative, inform the complainant as to their whereabouts.

 

4.  It is found that the by e-mail dated June 9, 2004, one board member described in paragraph 3, above, responded to the complainant and informed her that, as far as she knew, the requested records were in the main school office. 

 

5.  By e-mail dated June 10, 2004, the complainant requested that the respondent try to locate the requested records.  By e-mail dated June 10, 2004, the respondent informed the complainant that the requested records were last seen in the summer of 2003, but could not be located. 

 

6.  By letter dated June 23, 2004, and filed with the Commission on July 6, 2004, the complainant alleged that the respondent violated the Freedom of Information Act by denying her access to the requested records.  

 

7.  Section 1-210(a), G.S., provides in relevant part:

 

[e]xcept as otherwise provided by any federal law or state statute, all records maintained or kept on file 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 (1) inspect such records promptly during regular office or business hours….

 

8.  It is found that the respondent and his staff have conducted numerous searches for the requested records, but cannot locate them.  It is further found that the respondent has not seen the requested records since the summer of 2003.    

 

9.  It is also found that the respondent provided the complainant with a summary of the results of the survey described in paragraph 2, above, which summary was prepared in June 2003. 

 

10.  It is found that, at the time of the request described in paragraph 5, above, the respondent did not maintain or keep on file the requested records, within the meaning of 1-210(a), G.S.  Accordingly, it is concluded that the respondent did not violate 1-210(a), G.S., based on the facts and circumstances of this case. 

 

11.  The Commission is troubled by the inability of the respondent to locate the requested records.  However, issues of records retention are more properly brought before the State Public Records Administrator, who has jurisdiction over the retention and destruction of public records, pursuant to 11-8a, 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.

 

 

Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of March 23, 2005.

 

________________________________

Petrea A. Jones

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:

 

Jo Ann Kucejko

35 Woolam Road

East Windsor, CT 06088

 

Superintendent of Schools,

East Windsor Public Schools

c/o Anne H. Littlefield, Esq. and

Kevin M. Roy, Esq.

Shipman & Goodwin, LLP

One Constitution Plaza

Hartford, CT 06103-1919

 

 

 

___________________________________

Petrea A. Jones

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

 

FIC/2004-297FD/paj/3/29/2005