State Records Committee Appeal 01-04
BEFORE THE STATE RECORDS COMMITTEE OF THE STATE OF UTAH
MICHAEL JOHN BIXBY, Appellant, vs.
DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICE - DIVISION OF RISK MANAGEMENT, Appellee.
Case No. 01-04
By this appeal, Michael John Bixby seeks an order of the Committee requiring Appellee to provide him with information regarding an automobile accident. Specifically, Mr. Bixby requested: All reports, accident reports, letters, memorandum, etc, and all other documents produced or maintained by the Utah Department of Corrections regarding the automobile accident of a prisoner transport van on December 7, 2000. The accident occurred on Interstate 15 in or near the City of American Fork, Utah County. The operator of the van was either Jason Vasko or Jason Bosko.
The State Records Committee, having reviewed the materials submitted by the parties, and having heard oral argument and testimony of the parties on May 9, 2001, now issues the following Decision and Order.
STATEMENT OF REASONS FOR DECISION
1. The Government Records Access and Management Act ("GRAMA") specifies that "all records are public unless otherwise expressly provided by statute." Utah Code Ann. 63-2-201(2) (2000).
2. GRAMA also provides that records that are "protected" are not public. Utah Code Ann. 63-2-201(3) (2000).
3. The Committee finds that Risk Management properly denied access to the requested records inasmuch as they are properly classified as protected under Utah Code Ann. 63-2-304(24). This section allows Risk Management to classify "records of investigations of loss occurrences and analyses of loss occurrences that may be covered by the Risk Management Fund" as protected records. The requested records are within the scope of the this definition and, therefore, the appeal is denied.
WHEREFORE, IT IS ORDERED THAT Appellant's appeal is denied and the decision of the Division of Risk Management is affirmed.
RIGHT TO APPEAL
Either party may appeal this Decision and Order to the district court. The petition for review must be filed no later than thirty (30) days after the date of this Order. The petition for judicial review must be a complaint. The complaint and the appeals process are governed by the Utah Rules of Civil Procedure and by Utah Code Ann. 63-2-404. The court is required to make its decision de novo. In order to protect its rights on appeal, a party may wish to seek advice from an attorney.
Entered this 14th day of May, 2001.
BY THE STATE RECORDS COMMITTEE
Cherie Willis, Chairperson
State Records Committee