State Records Committee Appeal Decision 2019-07
BEFORE THE STATE RECORDS COMMITTEE OF THE STATE OF UTAH
BRADY EAMES, Petitioner, v.
UTAH LOCAL GOVERNMENT TRUST, Respondent.
DECISION AND ORDER
Case No. 19-07
By this appeal, Petitioner, Brady Eames, seeks access to records allegedly held by Respondent, Utah Local Government Trust.
On or about December 5, 2018, Mr. Eames made a records request to Utah Local Government Trust ("Respondent"), pursuant to the Government Records Access and Management Act (“GRAMA”). Mr. Eames requested numerous emails to/from specific individuals relating to Respondent.
Unsatisfied with the Respondent’s response, Mr. Eames filed an appeal with the State Records Committee (“Committee”) indicating that he had been denied access to the records. After hearing oral argument and testimony on March 14, 2019, and carefully considering the requested relief of the parties, the Committee issues the following Decision and Order.
STATEMENT OF REASONS FOR DECISION
1. The State Records Committee is authorized to: (1) Grant the relief sought, in whole or in part of a records committee appellant; or (2) Uphold the governmental entity’s access denial, in whole or in part. Utah Code § 63G-2-403(11)(a). Having reviewed Petitioner’s records request and the arguments and testimony of Respondent, the Committee finds that Respondent has not denied the Petitioner’s records request. Therefore, the Committee cannot grant the relief sought by Petitioner because there has not been a records access denial by Respondent. Accordingly, Petitioner’s appeal to the Committee is hereby denied.
THEREFORE, IT IS ORDERED THAT the appeal of Petitioner, Brady Eames is DENIED.
RIGHT TO APPEAL
A party to a proceeding before the Committee may seek judicial review in District Court of a Committee's Order by filing a petition for review of the Committee Order as provided in Utah Code § 63G-2-404. Utah Code § 63G-2-403(14). A petition for judicial review of a Committee Order "shall be filed no later than 30 days" after the date of the Committee Order. Utah Code § 63G-2-404(1)(a). The petition for judicial review must be a complaint which is governed by the Utah Rules of Civil Procedure and include the Committee as a necessary party and contain the required information listed in Subsection -404(2). Utah Code § 63G-2-404(1) & (2). The court shall make its decision de novo but shall allow introduction of evidence presented to the Committee, determine all questions of fact and law without a jury, and decide the issue at the earliest practical opportunity. Utah Code § 63G-2-404(6). In order to protect a parties’ rights on appeal, a party may wish to seek advice from an attorney.
Pursuant to Utah Code § 63G-2-403(15)(c), if the Committee orders the governmental entity to produce a record and no appeal is filed, the government entity herein shall comply with the order of the Committee and shall: (1) Produce the record; and (2) File a notice of compliance with the Committee. If the governmental entity ordered to produce a record fails to file a notice of compliance or a notice of intent to appeal, the Committee may do either or both of the following: (1) Impose a civil penalty of up to $500 for each day of continuing noncompliance; or (2) Send written notice of the entity's noncompliance to the Governor. Utah Code § 63G-2-403(15)(d)(i)(B). In imposing a civil penalty, the Committee shall consider the gravity and circumstances of the violation, including whether the failure to comply was due to neglect or was willful or intentional. Utah Code § 63G-2-403(15)(d)(ii).
Entered this 25th day of March 2019
BY THE STATE RECORDS COMMITTEE
TOM HARALDSEN, Chairperson
State Records Committee
Page Last Updated March 25, 2019 .