Watchdogs see apparent plague of FOIA failures in city government
The Edgar County Watchdogs (ECW) are speculating that the same attorney is giving the same bad advice regarding Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to Royal Lakes, Sawyerville and Carlinville, according to the group's website.
According to a letter posted on the ECW's Illinois Leaks site, the Village of Royal Lakes has announced that "residents will not get copies pertaining to Village of Royal Lakes businesses until further notice." The letter is attributed to Mayor Pareoka Huddleston.
The ECW said it also has received FOIA request rejections from Carlinville and Sawyerville.
In March, John Kraft, co-founder of the ECW, filed a suit against the City of Carlinville for its alleged refusal to provide documents he requested in January. In that request, Kraft asked for documents pertaining to nominating petitions for candidates for city clerk, treasurer and aldermen; correspondence of city employees about the electoral board; and all agendas, minutes and public notices about electoral board meetings.
On April 26, Kraft wrote that the city had failed to answer a 30-day summons before April 22 and instead filed a response on April 28.
"The Electoral Board Attorney did provide some of the requested records which may be the subject of this lawsuit, but that does not dismiss the required answering of summons," Kraft said in the April 26 article.