FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

 

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Bradshaw Smith,  
  Complainant  
  against   Docket #FIC 2008-326

Adam Gutcheon and Milo W. Peck,

Jr., as Members, Long Range Planning

Committee, Board of Education,

Windsor Public Schools; and Long

Range Planning Committee, Board

of Education, Windsor Public Schools,

 
  Respondents January 14, 2009
       

 

The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on September 26, 2008, at which time the complainant and the respondents appeared, stipulated to certain facts and presented testimony, exhibits and argument on the complaint.  For purposes of hearing, the above-captioned matter was consolidated with Docket #FIC 2008-325; Bradshaw Smith v. Milo W. Peck, Jr., Member, Magnet School Taskforce, Board of Education, Windsor Public Schools; and Magnet School Taskforce, Board of Education, Windsor Public Schools.

 

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 1-200(1), G.S.

2.      By letter dated and filed on May 7, 2008, the complainant appealed to this Commission alleging that the respondents violated the Freedom of Information (“FOI”) Act by failing to notice their April 30, 2008 special meeting.  The complainant requested that a civil penalty be imposed against the respondents.

3.      Section 1-225, G.S., provides in relevant part that:

(d) Notice of each special meeting of every public agency   . . . shall be given not less than twenty-four hours prior to the time of such meeting by filing a notice of the time and place thereof . . . in the office of the clerk of such subdivision for any public agency of a political subdivision of the state . . . The . . . clerk shall cause any notice received under this section to be posted in his office.  Such notice shall be given not less than twenty-four hours prior to the time of the special meeting….

4.      It is found that the respondents held a special meeting on Wednesday, April 30, 2008, at 6:30 p.m.

5.      At the hearing in this matter, counsel for the respondents confirmed that the notice and agenda for the respondents’ April 30, 2008 special meeting was not submitted to the Windsor town clerk.

6.      Consequently, it is found that the respondents failed to file the notice of its special meeting and that, therefore, no notice of such meeting was posted by the Windsor town clerk.

 

7.      It is concluded, therefore, that the respondents violated 1-225(d), G.S., by failing to file notice of its April 30, 2008 special meeting.

 

8.      At the hearing on this matter, counsel for the respondents represented that although the respondents could offer no acceptable explanation for why the notice and agenda for the April 30, 2008 meeting was not submitted to the Windsor town clerk, measures had been taken to ensure that such a violation would not occur again.

 

9.      In light of the representation described in paragraph 8, above, the Commission declines to consider the imposition of a civil penalty in this matter. 

 

The following order by the Commission is hereby recommended on the basis of the record concerning the above-captioned complaint:

1.      Henceforth, the respondents shall strictly comply with the notice provisions of 1-225(d), G.S.

 

 

Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of January 14, 2009.

 

 

 

________________________________

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:

 

Bradshaw Smith

23 Ludlow Road

Windsor, CT 06095

 

Adam Gutcheon and Milo W. Peck,

Jr., as Members, Long Range Planning

Committee, Board of Education,

Windsor Public Schools; and Long

Range Planning Committee, Board

of Education, Windsor Public Schools

c/o Gary R. Brochu, Esq.

Shipman & Goodwin, LLP

One Constitution Plaza

Hartford, CT 06103

 

 

 

___________________________________

Petrea A. Jones

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

 

FIC/2008-326/FD/paj/1/21/2009