2013-03-16 / Editorials & Letters

Hebron best on public records request

Editor:

Since this is “Sunshine Week” I thought it would be appropriate to share my most recent public records requests. I wasn’t performing a survey or an audit as the auditor’s office may have done but I certainly want to share the results.

I requested solicitor’s invoices from four entities: Hebron, Buckeye Lake village, Kirkersville and Shawnee Hills. The Village of Hebron, responded WITHIN MINUTES, via email and with exactly what I requested - WITHOUT redactions! Buckeye Lake responded in a timely manner with paper copies of the requested records - WITHOUT redactions!

The last two entities, Kirkersville and Shawnee Hills, gave me mixed results (which is surprising because they have the same clerk, Shirley Roskoski) but Kirkersville’s response took 10 days (via email) and Shawnee Hills’ was three days (via email)! Kirkersville’s invoices had only PARTIAL redactions and Shawnee Hills’ had TOTAL redactions!

I emailed Roskoski and asked why she had only partially redacted the description in the Kirkersville invoices unlike the TOTAL redaction in the past. Afterall, the total redaction in the previous invoices is what prompted me to complain to the Attorney General’s (AG) Office and is part of the reason for the mediation session with the AG’s office.

Four days later, Roskoski emailed me an answer and stated that the solicitor “Brian (Zets) had told her to redact names, identifying information, etc. but today (March 11th) he told me that he redacts the entire middle column so that is what I am going to do from now on.” It was only a few minutes later that she sent me the Shawnee Hills invoices - TOTALLY redacted!

According to the January minutes in Kirkersville, Zets told council that Shirley (Roskoski) gave me invoices that were un-redacted. The minutes say, “The next request came directly into (Zets’) office and he redacted those statements according to Ohio law and sent them to Bonnie Mansfield and that is where she has the issue where she was given fully unredacted invoices and that was by mistake, but the next ones she received were redacted by law, so he just wanted Council to be clear that we followed the law and that is our position with respect to this whole issue. We redacted out the portions that were descriptions.” In response to his claim that the request came directly into his office and he sent it to me: I did NOT send that request to his office nor did he send it to me. That was all done through Shirley Roskoski.

I can only deduce that the Kirkers- ville Fiscal Officer Shirey Roskoski and Kirkersville Solicitor Brian Zets (WHO BOTH ALSO WORK FOR SHAWNEE HILLS) must not communicate with each other.....OR that one of them is not being honest.

To be continued ...

Bonnie Mansfield
Buckeye Lake

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