Submitted PRRs Impacting City Clerk’s Office?
As was previously mentioned, we submitted 20 PRRs on August 21, 2013. Responses started entering our mailbox as of September 3. This appears to indicate that the required 10-day response period refers to 10 working days and not 10 calendar days, a question that we are still searching for a definitive answer.
By the beginning of the Mayor’s September 3 press conference to complain about “disgruntled former employees,” we had received responses to one quarter of our submitted PRRs, with a statement indicating more time was needed to respond to the others.
Of the responses received, some were incomplete, so we will be requesting the missing documentation. Our request for cell phone records was met with a response indicating “no records exist.” If the City pays a monthly cell phone allowance, should that phone’s records by subject to a public information request? We intend to find out. As such, we will be asking the City Attorney’s office for an explanation as to why “no records exist” for cell phones paid for with City funds.
The Mayor was quoted in an email to the Chico News and Review as stating ,”The folks that prepare the minutes are also the ones that must respond to the info requests. When one puts these two points together, well, it just looks like some people are trying to make life difficult for a couple of hard-working city clerks, and that is nothing more than being mean.” (We have included a copy of this article for you below.) In making this statement, is the Mayor attempting to place blame on concerned citizens (like ourselves) for the posted Council minutes being eight months behind?
The City Clerk does have the responsibility of responding to PRRs; however, she is not responsible for compiling the requested information. Unless the requested information is specific to her department, such as how long has a Councilmember been on Council, the information comes from the responsible department. Therefore in many if not most cases, the compiled information passes through the City Clerk’s office for transmittal only.
As mentioned above, we submitted our PRRs on August 21. At that time, the last posted Council meeting minutes were for January 15, 2013. The math works out to just shy of seven months and one week.
Considering the above, the Mayor is going to have to find someone else to blame for the delay in posting Council meeting minutes.