FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Jason M. Day,    
  Complainant  
  against   Docket #FIC 2010-121
Warden, State of Connecticut,
Department of Correction,
Northern Correctional Institution; and
State of Connecticut,
Department of Correction,
 
  Respondents February 9, 2011
       

 

            The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on November 24, 2010, at which time the complainant and respondents appeared, stipulated to certain facts and presented testimony, exhibits and argument on the complaint.  The complainant, who is incarcerated, appeared via teleconference, pursuant to the January 2004 memorandum of understanding between the Commission and the Department of Correction.  See Docket No. CV 03-0826293, Anthony Sinchak v. FOIC, et al., Superior Court, J.D., of Hartford at Hartford, Corrected Order dated January 27, 2004 (Sheldon, J.).

 

After the hearing on this matter, pursuant to 1-21j-38 of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies, the complainant filed one after-filed exhibit that is marked as follows:  Complainant’s Exhibit G, Letter from Jason Day, dated November 25, 2010, to Attorney Mary Schwind, with attachments.

 

 

            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.      It is found that, by letter dated January 1, 2010, the complainant made a request to the respondents for the following:

 

[a] Copy of “P.C.” placement package created between 10/10/09 – 10/21/2009;

 

[b] All copies of CN 9404 form’s [sic] executed to authorize my S/N’s placement;

 

[c] Any/all copies of CN 9405 form’s [sic] executed to authorize my S/N’s placement; and

 

[d] Any/all psychiatric servs.[sic] recommendations authorizing my S/N’s placement.

 

The complainant seeks reclassification records pertaining to his removal by the Department of Correction (DOC) from protective custody, and placement in a special needs management unit.

 

3.      It is found that, by letter dated January 14, 2010, the respondents acknowledged receipt of the complainant’s records request, described in paragraph 2, above, and informed him that they were in the process of reviewing his request.

 

4.      By letter dated February 18, 2010, and filed on February 23, 2010, the complainant appealed to this Commission, alleging that the respondents violated the Freedom of Information (“FOI”) Act by failing to provide him with copies of the records described in paragraph 2, above. 

 

5.      Section 1-200(5), G.S., defines “public records or files” as:

 

any recorded data or information relating to the conduct of the public’s business prepared, owned, used, received or retained by a public agency, or to which a public agency is entitled to receive a copy by law or contract under section 1-218, whether such data or information be handwritten, typed, tape-recorded, printed, photostated, photographed or recorded by any other method.

 

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

 

Except 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 . . . (3) receive a copy of such records in accordance with section 1-212.

 

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

 

8.      It is found that the records requested by the complainant, to the extent that they exist, are public records within the meaning of 1-200(5), 1-210(a) and 1-212(a), G.S.

 

9.      It is found that, prior to October 26, 2010, the respondents, on two occasions, delivered records to the complainant responsive to his request, described in paragraph 2, above.  It is also found that the complainant reviewed such records, but believed that certain records were missing, and thereafter made two additional requests to the respondents for the alleged missing records.

 

10.  It is found that, on October 27, 2010, Correctional Officer Todd Sokolowski, on behalf of the respondents, provided the complainant with nineteen pages of records responsive to the complainant’s January 1st request, described in paragraph 2, above.  The respondents also offered to provide the complainant with another copy of such records subsequent to the hearing in this matter.   

 

11.  It is found that Officer Sokolowski performed a diligent and thorough search of all records regarding the complainant. 

 

12.  At the hearing, the complainant acknowledged that the respondents provided him with records responsive to his January 1st request, and stated that he was willing to accept that the respondents are not withholding any records responsive to such request. 

 

13.  Nevertheless, the complainant contends that the respondents failed to generate other reclassification records pertaining to his removal from protective custody and placement in a special needs management unit that are allegedly required pursuant to certain DOC directives and the state Personal Data Act, including, but not limited to, the reasons relied upon by the DOC for such removal and placement.  The complainant also maintains that some of the records provided to him by the respondents were improperly executed pursuant to such DOC directives and the Personal Data Act.  Even if these contentions are accurate, this Commission has no jurisdiction to enforce the directives of the DOC or the provisions of the Personal Data Act.  Further, if the complainant believes that the respondents are not in compliance with such directives or statutory requirements, the complainant is free to seek recourse in the appropriate forums.

 

14.  It is concluded, therefore, that the respondents did not violate the disclosure provisions of 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 February 9, 2011.

 

 

____________________________

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:

 

Jason M. Day, #105746

Northern Correctional Institution

287 Bilton Road

P.O. Box 665

Somers, CT 06071


Warden, State of Connecticut,

Department of Correction,

Northern Correctional Institution; and

State of Connecticut,

Department of Correction

C/o James E. Neil, Esq.

Department of Correction

24 Wolcott Hill Road

Wethersfield, CT 06109

 

 

 

 

____________________________

S. Wilson

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

FIC/2010-121FD/sw/2/14/2011