The FOI Compliance Check Report: By: Chris Kuczo and Edgar Ayala

First things first, we did our project on the town compliance for the Freedom of Information Act of 2011. And we both had significant enough success trying to procure the information necessary for the New Haven Register to complete their project to see what the towns we went to were like when asked to release a contract relating to how much the spend on attorneys, and/or if they hired an attorney on staff or an outside attorney.

Chris’ Experience:

Chris was able to go to North Haven and successfully acquire not the legal contract between an outside attorney/attorney on staff, but a budget entailing the expenses that they designated for legal fees. Chris was also able to have a small chat with Michael Freda, who specified how certain entities relating to the budget worked. However Freda said that the town of North Haven does not have a memo/contract of agreement between any attorney either hired on staff or an outside attorney.

Overall Chris was able to come out of there with information related a decent amount to what he needed, but not a 100% of what he needed.

Chris’ FOI Check Grade: A-

Edgar’s Experience:

Edgar made his way to the Town Hall of Orange, CT. Once he walked into the building he visted the Town Clerk’s Office and spoke to Patrick O’Sullivan. Then he told me to visit the First Selectman office, where I spoke to the office manager there, Karen Goldberg. She then told me to go upstairs and visit the Finance Department where I spoke to Albert Chiarenzelli. He was very helpful, when I talked to him about the lawyers contracts, he know exactly what I was talking about. He then told me to come back in a few days to make copies. He was so generous that he offered to not charge me for the copies, stating “you’re a hard working student, so Ill give you them for free.” Overall, the town of Orange went pretty well.

Edgar’s FOI Check Grade: B+

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