FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Patrick Dolan,  
  Complainant  
  against   Docket #FIC 2004-432

Commissioner, State of Connecticut,

Department of Mental Health and

Addiction Services,

 
  Respondent August 24, 2005
       

 

            The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on April 28, 2005, 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 letter dated January 5, 2004, the complainant requested documents relating to:

 

a.  two separate sexual abuse incidents, including investigations, meeting minutes, records of discussions, and other communications;

 

b.  the filling or posting of Clinical Social Worker Associate positions, including electronic records or documents; and

 

c.  any written or electronic records of communications regarding the complaint’s formal complainant made to then Governor John Rowland.

 

3.  It is found that on or about August 24, 2004, the complainant received a copy of 427 records responsive to his request.

4.  By letter dated September 19, 2004 and filed with the Commission on September 22, 2004, the complainant appealed to the Commission alleging that the respondent violated the Freedom of Information (hereinafter “FOI”) Act, by failing to provide certain requested documentation, as described in paragraph 2, above.  The letter acknowledged receipt of many of the requested records but the complainant alleged there was a “glaring omission in the requested documentation actually provided”.

 

5.  It is found that the complainant alleged insufficient documentation regarding:

 

a.       correspondence from Vickie DesCoteaux, then Commissioner’s Liaison to the Young Adult Services Program, with regard to her participation and observations at a meeting held at Southeastern Mental Authority on May 8, 2001. 

 

b.  a meeting held sometime in May 2003 at the Connecticut Office of the Child Advocate in Hartford.

 

c.        a meeting held in the respondent Commissioner’s offices sometime in July or August of 2002 to discuss certain threats and retaliation. 

 

6.  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…receive a copy of such records in accordance with section 1-212….

7.  Section 1-212(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 . . . .”

 

8.  It is found that the requested records, to the extent such records exist, are public records within the meaning of 1-210(a), G.S.

 

9.  At the hearing on this matter, the complainant explained that he believed there are additional records responsive to his request that were not provided to him.  The respondent maintained that the complainant was provided with all the records responsive to his request that are maintained by the respondent and that no other records exist.

 

10.  It is found that the respondent conducted a diligent and good faith search to ascertain if additional records exist, but that no such records were found.

 

11.  Therefore, it is found that the respondent fully complied with the complainant’s request and that the complainant was provided with all the records responsive to his request that are maintained by the respondent.

 

12.  Based on the facts and circumstances of this case, it is concluded that the respondent did not violate 1-210(a) and 1-212(a), G.S., 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 August 24, 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:

 

Patrick Dolan

4 Philanne Drive

Norwich, CT 06360

 

Commissioner, State of Connecticut,

Department of Mental Health and

Addiction Services

c/o Michael Sullivan, Esq.

Assistant Attorney General

PO Box 120

55 Elm Street

Hartford, CT 06141-0120

 

 

___________________________________

Petrea A. Jones

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

 

FIC/2004-432FD/paj/8/26/2005