Written on: July 1st, 2011 in 10001 Declaration of Policy
Requester sought information about total compensation paid to employees and outside service providers in calendar year 2010. Held that because legislature amended FOIA to expressly include sewer and water authorities, the Camden-Wyoming Sewer and Water Authority (CWSWA) is a public body, and because records including information about employee compensation relate to public business of the CWSWA, the CWSWA violated FOIA by failing to provide such records.
Written on: June 22nd, 2011 in 10002(l) (6) Exemptions - Records Exempted Per Statute or Common Law
Petitioners sought records of Brandywine School District related to two lawsuits against the District. District asserted that the settlement agreements were exempt from disclosure because they were filed under seal with the courts in question. Held that settlement agreements filed under seal, with court approval, are exempt from disclosure and are not public records under §10002(g)(6), because the District is not required to commit contempt of Court to provide the records.
Written on: May 5th, 2011 in 10001 Declaration of Policy, 10004(b)(1) Executive Session Job Qualifications, 10004(b)(9) Executive Session Personnel Matters, 10004(c) Requirements to Meet in Executive Session, 10004(e)(2) Notice Requirements for Regular Meetings, 10004(f) Minutes Requirements
OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE Attorney General Opinion No. 11-IB08 May 5, 2011 Mr. Daniel J. Kramer 8041 Scotts Store Road Greenwood, DE 19950 RE: Freedom of Information Act Complaint Against Sussex County Council Dear Mr. Kramer: By letters of March 23, 2011 and March 26, 2011, you have asked […]
Written on: April 1st, 2011 in 10002(l) (1) Exemptions - Personnel
Reporter requested attendance records and badge entry records for a specific merit employee with Dept. of Labor. Held that (a) under the merit rules, the attendance records were confidential; and (b) the disclosure of card swipe/access records would violate the security provision of FOIA because it must be applied uniformly, without regard to the identity of the requester. As a result, the Dept. of Labor was correct in not releasing any records.
Written on: March 29th, 2011 in 10001 Declaration of Policy
Requester sought records “relating to” a parcel of land eventually purchased by DelDOT. Held that DelDOT violated FOIA when (1) DelDOT interpreted the request too narrowly when it limited response to real estate records; (2) when DelDOT provided a summary of the documents in lieu of copies of the documents; (3) DelDOT failed to do an adequate search of the records; and (4) DelDOT failed to request records from DTI in a reasonably prompt fashion. However, because all records were eventually provided, no remediation was necessary.
Petitioner complained that the City of Newark violated FOIA when (1) the Mayor made an appointment to the Newark Housing Authority without a public meeting and without a vote of the City Council, (2) when the Mayor “conferred” with members of Council in person or via email, (3) when Petitioner was denied copies of those emails, and (4) when a focus group met without notice to the public. Petitioner further asked whether City violated FOIA by not providing copies of emails between Mayor and Council members sent and received on private computers through non-City email accounts. Held that the City of Newark did not violate FOIA because (1) the emails sought did not exist; (2) the mayor was not required to hold a public meeting because the Mayor was a body of one; (3) stakeholder meetings were not meetings of a public body because a City employee met informally with stakeholders to provide input about electric rate structure; and (4) personal emails that were not in the City’s possession were not public records.
Written on: March 16th, 2011 in 10002(h) Public Body
Petitioner sought records from the Camden-Wyoming Sewer and Water Authority. Held that because the Camden-Wyoming Sewer and Water Authority neither receives nor disburses public funds, it is not a public body. As a result, it was not subject to FOIA.
Written on: February 14th, 2011 in 10002(a) Agenda
Mayor of City of New Castle objected to County Council’s December 14, 2010 meeting on three bases – (i) agenda for executive session was insufficient; (ii) procedures for selecting a new city solicitor were improperly discussed in executive session; and (iii) the executive session was held before the public meeting was scheduled to begin. Opinion held that (i) agenda for executive session was sufficient; (ii) although Council violated FOIA by discussing more in executive session than it should have, this was remediated by a later special meeting in which these items were discussed; and (iii) although Council violated FOIA by going into executive session without a vote at a public meeting, no remediation was necessary because of the later special meeting in which all items were discussed.