Thursday, September 4, 2014

How many FOIA Officers?

Just how many Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Officers does the McHenry County Sheriff's Department have?

How many would you think it ought to have? One; right? There ought to be one (1) FOIA Officer; i.e., one designated employee who serves in that capacity. One person who makes the decisions. Yes, there will be employees who do some of the work, but there ought to be just one official, designated FOIA Officer.

Earlier this year Sgt. Carolyn Decman identified herself as "FOIA Officer" in a response to a FOIA request submitted from outside the State of Illinois (not by me).

Now there is the FOIA request from me that is pending; it's about the domestic violence incident involving a deputy - the one in which reports list the deputy as the Suspect.

MCSD employee Timberlee Hall is identified as the FOIA Officer in correspondence with the Public Access Bureau of the Office of the Illinois Attorney General.

And within that correspondence, as MCSD struggles to avoid responding thoroughly to my request, is a letter on MCSD stationery to the Public Access Bureau from Duane Cedergren, Commander, FOIA Officer.

And, on August 13, when I telephoned the Records Division of the MCSD, a Lori (last name was refused) took the call when I asked for the FOIA Officer and told me she was "one of them".

When Mrs. Jan Weech was the FOIA Officer, MCSD got along just fine with one FOIA Officer. Why, now, do at least four people identify themselves as FOIA Officers?

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