FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
John Bolton,  
  Complainant  
  against   Docket #FIC 2006-378

Chief, Police Department,

City of Bridgeport,

 
  Respondent  June 13, 2007
       

           

The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on January 8, 2007, at which time the complainant and the respondent appeared, stipulated to certain facts and presented testimony, exhibits and argument on the complaint.  For purposes of hearing, this matter was consolidated with Docket #FIC 2006-376; John Bolton v. Mayor, City of Bridgeport and Docket #FIC 2006-377; John Bolton v. Civil Service Commission, City of Bridgeport; and Personnel Director, City of Bridgeport. 

    

 

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 July 3, 2006, the complainant requested that the respondent provide him with copies of the high school diplomas or G.E.D. certificates for twenty City of Bridgeport Fire Department recruits or candidates.

 

3.  It is found that, by letter dated July 19, 2006, an attorney for the City of Bridgeport informed the complainant that he could receive copies of the records described in paragraph 2, above, upon payment of the statutory copying fee. 

 

4.  By letter dated July 20, 2006, and filed with the Commission on July 24, 2006, the complainant alleged that the respondent violated the Freedom of Information Act by denying him copies of the records described in paragraph 2, above.  At the hearing in this matter, the complainant informed the Commission that, since the filing of the complaint in this matter, he had received all records requested except the diplomas or G.E.D. certificates of four individuals, and that his complaint was limited to the requests for such records.   

 

5.  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 ….

 

6.  Section 1-212(a), G.S., provides in relevant part: “[a]ny person applying in writing shall receive, promptly upon request, a plain or certified copy of any public record.” 

 

7.  It is found that the respondent does not keep on file or maintain the records described in paragraph 2, above, within the meaning of 1-210(a), G.S.  Rather, it is found that the Internal Affairs Division of the Bridgeport Police Department [hereinafter “the division”] maintains such records and that, pursuant to an August 9, 2005, order of the United States District Court, the respondent has no authority to disseminate the records of the division. 

 

8.  It is found that the attorney described in paragraph 3, above, coordinated the response to the request described in paragraph 2, above, with the division. 

 

9.  It is found that the division has provided the complainant with all records, which it keeps on file or maintains that are responsive to the request described in paragraph 2, above.  It is further found that the division does not keep on file or maintain the four records described in paragraph 4, above. 

 

10.  It is concluded that the respondent did not violate 1-210(a) and 1-212(a), G.S., based on the facts and circumstances of this case. 

 

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 June 13, 2007.

 

________________________________

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:

 

John Bolton

71 Woodland Avenue

Bridgeport, CT 06605

 

Chief, Police Department,

City of Bridgeport

c/o John H. Barton, Esq.

Office of the City Attorney

999 Broad Street, 2nd floor

Bridgeport, CT 06604

 

 

___________________________________

Petrea A. Jones

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

 

 

FIC/2006-378FD/paj/6/20/2007