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Attorney General Matt Denn


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10001-declarations

18-IB49 10/9/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Mr. David Moskowitz re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Town of Dewey Beach

Written on: October 11th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioner alleged that the Town Manager and Police Chief lacked the authority to execute certain documents, that the Town Manager and Police Chief are a public body that must hold open meetings, and that the public interest in these documents must trigger open meeting requirements. DECIDED: No FOIA violation was found. Questions of municipal law are outside the scope of FOIA.


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10001-declarations

18-IB48 10/8/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Ms. Jennifer Kye re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Delaware State Police

Written on: October 11th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioner alleged that the Delaware State Police (“DSP”) improperly withheld records under the Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights (“LEOBOR”) and a confidentiality order. DECIDED: Complaints against law enforcement officers were properly withheld as records specifically exempted from public disclosure under LEOBOR. There was insufficient information from the parties to determine if other records responsive to the request for litigation documents exist. This Office recommended that the petitioner file a new request with any available information to assist DSP in locating possibly responsive records and DSP respond to the request as required by FOIA.


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10001-declarations

18-IB47 10/8/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Mr. David Moskowitz re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Town of Dewey Beach

Written on: October 11th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioner alleged that a meeting of the Dewey Beach Town Manager, Audit Committee chair, accountants, and auditor constituted a meeting of a public body that did not meet open meeting requirements. Petitioner further alleged that certain legal authority and the public interest in the meeting topic required the meeting to be subject to open meeting requirements. DECIDED: No FOIA violation was found. Questions of municipal law are outside the scope of FOIA.


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10001-declarations

18-IB46 10/5/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Mr. Paul Reiger re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Sussex County Board of Adjustment

Written on: October 11th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioner alleged that a meeting agenda for the Sussex County Board of Adjustment did not describe an agenda item in sufficient detail. DECIDED: No FOIA violation was found.


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10001-declarations

18-IB45 10/5/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Mr. Craig O’Donnell re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Town of Dewey Beach

Written on: October 5th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioner alleged that the Town of Dewey Beach improperly cited the exemption for investigatory materials in denying his request for a video. DECIDED: The video is part of an investigative file. Thus the exemption was properly applied.


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10001-declarations

18-IB44 9/24/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Mr. Kevin Ohlandt re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Auditor of Accounts

Written on: October 5th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioner alleged that the Auditor of Accounts did not respond to his request for records within the time required by FOIA and did not respond to questions. DECIDED: AOA violated FOIA by not responding within 15 business days. However, because the documents were since provided, no remediation recommended. FOIA does not require a public body to respond to questions.


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10001-declarations

18-IB43 9/6/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Ms. Melony Anderson re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Division of Revenue

Written on: September 6th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioner alleged the Division of Revenue improperly withheld records. DECIDED: The records requested were not considered public records under FOIA since they are specifically exempted from public disclosure by 30 Del. C. § 368, which prohibits the disclosure of information contained in tax records. No FOIA violation was found.


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10001-declarations

18-IB42 8/30/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Mr. Dan Kramer re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Frankford Town Council

Written on: September 6th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioner alleged that the Frankford Town Council improperly met in executive session and held a vote to fire their solicitor. DECIDED: No vote was held in executive session. Further, this Office determined that the executive session was properly held to discuss an individual’s competencies and abilities. No FOIA violation was found.


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10001-declarations

18-IB41 8/28/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Mr. Craig O’Donnell and Ms. Shannon McNaught re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Dewey Beach Town Council

Written on: September 6th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioners alleged that the Dewey Beach Town Council held a meeting that was not noticed to the public when a majority of the Town Council attended a meeting of the Audit Committee. DECIDED: Because there was no allegation that the Councilmembers discussed or deliberated public business among themselves, held a vote, or reached a consensus, their presence at another body’s meeting did not constitute a meeting of the Town Council. No FOIA violation was found.


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10001-declarations

18-IB40 8/24/2018 FOIA Opinion Letter to Ms. Vicki Carmean, Ms. Julie Lee, and Mr. Roy Williams re: FOIA Complaint Concerning the Town of Fenwick Island

Written on: September 6th, 2018 in 10001 Declaration of Policy

Petitioners alleged that the Town violated FOIA in two ways: 1) five individuals associated with the Town privately communicated about a building permit outside of a public meeting; and 2) the Building Committee improperly approved a building permit without a public meeting and vote. DECIDED: The five individuals are not a public body, and thus, their communications did not violate FOIA. The Building Committee violated FOIA by not holding a public meeting to approve the permit. It is recommended that the Building Committee conduct a public meeting to formally vote on the permit application. A supplemental opinion is to follow.


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