FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION

OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

 

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Mark Wither,  
  Complainant  
  against   Docket #FIC 2008-498

Technology Committee,

Town of Easton,

 
  Respondent July 8, 2009
       

 

            The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on October 16, 2008, 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.  By letter of complaint filed July 30, 2008, the complainant appealed to the Commission, alleging that the respondent violated the Freedom of Information (“FOI”) Act because:

 

a.       The names and titles or offices of the members of the respondent were not on file in the Town Clerk’s office;

 

b.      The respondent did not have regular meetings scheduled;

 

c.       The respondent had not filed minutes for March 2008;

 

d.      The respondent had not elected a chairman or secretary;

 

e.       The respondent did not currently have any motions or voting record in the minutes that exist;

 

f.       If the First Selectman were the chairman of the respondent, it would create a conflict of interest, and the First Selectman would be making recommendations to himself; and

 

g.      Meetings of the respondent had been taking place without a quorum.

 

3.  It is concluded that allegations described in paragraphs 2.a, 2.d, 2.f, and 2.g, above, do not, on their face, allege any violation of the FOI Act.

 

4.  With respect to the allegation described in paragraph 2.b, above, it is found that the respondent does not hold regular meetings, and that therefore this allegation does not allege a violation of the FOI Act.

 

5.  With respect to the allegation described in paragraph 2.c, above, it is found that the respondent did not hold any meetings in March 2008, and that therefore this allegation does not allege a violation of the FOI Act.

 

6.  With respect to the allegation described in paragraph 2.e, above, 1-225(a), G.S., at the time of the filing of the complaint in this matter, provided in relevant part[1]:

 

The votes of each member of any such public agency upon any issue before such public agency shall be reduced to writing and made available for public inspection within forty-eight hours and shall also be recorded in the minutes of the session at which taken, which minutes shall be available for public inspection within seven days of the session to which they refer.

 

7.  It is found that the respondent had issued a request for proposals for providing information technology services to the Easton Town Hall.

 

8.  It is found that a number of applicants replied to the request for proposal.

 

9.  It is found that the respondent, at its July 14, 2008 meeting, decided to create a short list of three applicants, from a larger number of applicants, whose responses to the RFP would be pursued. 

 

10.  It is found that the minutes of the July 14, 2008 meeting of the respondent do not reflect that decision or vote.

 

11.  It is concluded that the respondents violated 1-225(a), G.S., by failing to record the votes of its members on the issue of the short list.

 

 

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

 

            1.  With respect to the allegations described in paragraphs 2.a, 2.b, 2.c, 2.d, 2.f and 2.g of the findings, above, the complaint is dismissed.

 

2.  Henceforth the respondent shall strictly comply with the record of vote requirements of 1-225(a), G.S.

 

 

 

 

Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of July 8, 2009.

 

 

____________________________

S. Wilson

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:

 

Mark Wither

105 Waterbury Road

Prospect, CT 06712

 

Technology Committee,

Town of Easton

C/o First Selectman

Thomas Herrmann

Town of Easton

225 Center Street

Easton, CT 06612

 

 

____________________________

S. Wilson

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

FIC/2008-498FD/sw/7/13/2009

 

 



[1] Section 1-225(a), G.S., has been subsequently amended in ways not relevant to this matter.