Utah Department of Administrative Services

Division of Archives & Records Service

State Records Committee Appeal 07-12

BEFORE THE STATE RECORDS COMMITTEE OF THE STATE OF UTAH

MARVIN MELVILLE, Petitioner, vs.

TOWN OF ALTA, Respondent.

DECISION AND ORDER

Case No. 07-12

By this appeal, Marvin Melville seeks access to records from the Town of Alta. The State Records Committee, having reviewed the materials submitted by the parties, and having heard oral argument and testimony on July 26, 2007, now issues the following Decision and Order.

STATEMENT OF REASONS FOR DECISION

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). Records that are not public are designated as either "private," "protected," or "controlled." See Utah Code Ann. 63-2-302, -303 and -304. The Department denied Mr. Melville a portion of the records he seeks on the grounds that the records are drafts, personal notes, and/or attorney/client privileged materials.

The Committee has reviewed the records in camera and is persuaded that the Town of Alta has properly classified the records requested by Melville as protected pursuant to Utah Code Ann. 63-2-304 (16), (17), (18) and (22).

The Committee is not convinced that the portion of the Order of June 7th striking the fees charged to Mr. Melville should be reversed or vacated, and that order shall therefore stand as entered.

ORDER

THEREFORE, IT IS ORDERED THAT the appeal of Marvin Melville is denied as to release of the documents provided in camera to the Committee.

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 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.

PENALTY NOTICE

Pursuant to Utah Code Ann. 63-2-403(14)(d), the government entity herein shall comply with the order of the Committee and, if records are ordered to be produced, file (i) a notice of compliance with the records committee upon production of the records; or (ii) a notice of intent to appeal. If the government entity fails to file a notice of compliance or a notice of intent to appeal, the Committee may do either or both of the following: (a) impose a civil penalty of up to $500 for each day of continuing noncompliance; or (b) send written notice of the entity's noncompliance to the Governor for executive branch entities, to the Legislative Management Committee for legislative branch entities, and to the Judicial Council for judicial branch agencies entities.

Entered this 2nd day of August, 2007.

BY THE STATE RECORDS COMMITTEE

Carl Albrecht, Chairperson
State Records Committee