Stacy Tebo Filed a Verified Petition for Writ of Mandamus and Complaint for Declaratory and injunctive Relief pursuant to Florida’s Public Records Act on 10/13/2015; Filing #33171093, against the Respondent City of DeBary (hereinafter DeBary).
DeBary’s response is in Red:
- To enforce the public right of access to records of government guaranteed by Article I, Sectin 24(a), Constitution of Florida, and by Section 119.07 (1), Florida Statutes and to enforce the public right of protection of certain records which are not considered public pursuant to Section 119.0713. – DeBary Admitted that this is an action for access to governmental records and Denied Tebo’s action has merit. It is further admitted that Tebo is asserting a public right of protection of certain records which are “not considered public” pursuant to section 119.0713. Denied that such action has merit.
- Seeks a writ of mandamus pursuant to Fla.R.Civ.P. I.630 for the purpose of enforcing the public right of access to records of government. DeBary denied that her claim has merit and further denied that Tebo is seeking a Writ of Mandamus to enforce the public right of access to records of government.
- Seeks a declaration, inter alta, that DeBary is subject to and violated Florida Public Records Act, specifically Section 119.0713 and Section 119.07(1), Florida Statutes. DeBary denies it has violated the Florida Public Records Act and admits that it is subject to the public Records Act.
- Seeks injunction prohibiting DeBary from charging fees under Resolution 15-05 for public record requests prior to the adoption of Resolution 15-05. DeBary denies there is a basis for the injunction sought.
- Seeks an injunction prohibiting DeBary from releasing any Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (hereinafter EEOC) complaints, including Petitioner Tebo’s EEOC Complaint in accordance with section 119.0713 DeBary denies that Tebo has an entitlement to such relief.
- Requests that this Court (The Circuit Court, Seventh Judicial Circuit and for Volusia County FL) expedite consideration of this cause pursuant to Section 119.11(I), Florida Statutes, which states “(w)henever an action is filed to enforce the provisions of this chapter, the court shall set an immediate hearing, giving the same priority over other pending cases. DeBary denied that expedited consideration is necessary.
Tebo’s public records request included:
- All documents regarding any change to the March 19, 2015 directive from Dan Parrot; Denied
- All documents Linda Kent and Dan Parrott provided to Mark Harper (News Journal reporter) from March 9, 2015 through April 15, 2015 Admitted
- All documents related to fees charged to or paid by Mark Harper for any copies of the above requested documents Denied
- All documents related to fees charged to or paid by any other requestor for copies or responses to their public records requests,Denied and
- Copies of any and all public records requests made by members of the media. Denied
- April 17, 2015 an oral reminder of the April 15, 2015 written public records request was made by Tebo.; Without Knowledge, therefore denied. On May 5, 2015, Tebo emailed a written follow-up to the April 15, 2015 written public records request to DeBary Admitted ; Respondent Debary replied the same day and only stated they would look into it and get back to Tebo. Admitted
- The May 5, 2015 email from DeBary was not a sufficient response to Tebo’s public records request. Denied Prior to May 6, 2015, there would have been no change for the documents requested by Tebo. Denied Adoption on May 6, 2015, DeeBary’s Resolution 15-05 requires charges for public records requests and adds an hourly fee for any supervisor present beyond fifteen (15) minutes. Admitted(Charges are allowed by FL law so it is surprising Tebo would make this an issue, especially in line with the types of public records requests she required, which would take a substantial amount of time.)
On May 8, 2015 DeBary e-mailed Tebo regarding her public records request. DeBary’s email was deficient as follows:
- Failed to respond regarding any change to the March 19, 2015 directive from Dan Parrot
- Failed to respond and/or attempted to frustrate Tebo’s public records request by attempting to shield itself from Tebo’s request by imposing the charges adopted pursuant to Resolution 15-05. Specifically, DeBary admitted approximately 1,100-1200 pages of documents were provided to Mark Harper; however, DeBary demanded Tebo pay a per page copy charge and an hourly supervision rate for the same exact documents.
- DeBarry failed to respond regarding all documents related to fees charge to or paid by Mark Harper for any copies of the above requested documents.
- Failed to respond regarding all documents related to fees charge to or paid by any other requestors for copies or responses to their public records requests; and
- DeBary failed to respond regarding copies of any and all public records requests made by members of the media.
To date DeBary has failed to provide the public records requested to Petitioner Tebo
Additionally Tebo filed an EEOC complaint against DeBary City Manager. Dan Parrott is the focus of the EEOC Compaint Admitted
Through communication between Tebo and Mark Harper, a News Journal reporter, it was determined that DeBary released a copy of Tebo’s EEOC Complaint, in violation of Section 119.0713, Florida Statutes. Without knowledge as to communications between Ms. Tebo and Mark Harper. Denied that the City released a copy of Ms. Tebo’s EEOC Complaint in violation of Section 119.0713, FL Statute. Tebo’s EEOC Compaint was under active investigation when DeBary provided a copy to Mark Harper at the News Journal. Admitted Tebo’s EEOC Complaint is specifically referenced in New Journal Articles Published and implied in others. Admitted
Section 119.0713(1) provides, in pertinent part, that: “All complaints and other records in the custody of any unit of local government which relate to a complaint of discrimination relating to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, handicap, marital status, sale or rental of housing, the provision of brokerage services, or the financial housing are exempt from s.119.07(`) NS A. 13(A), Art 1 of the State Constitution until a finding is maderelating in probable cause, the investigation of the complaint becomes inactive, or the complaint or other record is made part of the official record of any hearing or court proceeding” (emphasis added) Admitted
.Whenever an action is filed to enforce the provision of the chapter, the court shall set an immediate hearing, giving the case priority over other pending cases. Admitted
All conditions precedent to the institution of this action occurred or have been waived and Tebo is entitled to a Writ of Mandamus and Declaratory and Injunction Relief. Denied
This is an action against Respondent DeBary for violation of the Florida’s Public Records Act under Article 1, Section 24(a) Constitution of Florida, and by Section 119.07(1) Florida Statutes. Admitted this action for alleged violations of the public Records Act of Florida. Denied that the Petitioner is entitled to any relief.
Tebo has a clear legal right to have DeBary perform its nondiscretionary duty of furnishing copies of the requested records. Admitted, subject to the fees permitted pursuant to Section 119.07(4)
VIOLATIONS OF SECTION FLORIDA STATUTES
DeBary failed to timely respond and produce documents Denied
To date, DeBary has failed to respond regarding copies of any and all public records request made by members of the media. Denied ;Has failed to respond regarding any change in the March 19, 2015 directive from Dan Parrott Denied; has failed to respond regarding all documents related to fees charged to or paid by Mark Harper; Denied; has failed to respond regarding all documents related to fees charged to or paid by other requestors for copies or responses to their public records requests Denied;; has failed to respond regarding copies of any and all public records requests made by members of the media Denied; On May 8, 2015 Debary emailed Tebo and admitted approximately 1,100-1200 pages of documents were provided to Mark Harper. Admitted;
DeBary demanded Tebo pay a per page copy charge and hourly supervision rate for the same exact documents provided to Mark Harper free of charge; Denied; DeBary delayed for 23 days its response to Tebo’s public record request until it could adopt Resolution 15.05 Denied
Tebo has no other adequate remedy to compel DeBary to perform its duty ot furnish copies of the requested records; DeBary cannot retroactively apply Resolution 15-05; Denied; Tebo has made a lawful request for public records and DeBary has failed to comply with the request and Tebo is entitled to writ of mandamus requiring DeBary produce the requested records; Denied; Tebo is entitled to reasonable attorney’s fees, filing fees and costs pursuant to Section 119.12 Florida Statues for pursuing this instant civil action to enforce the public records law; Denied
Respondent, City of DeBary, adopts and reasserts its responses
VIOLATION OF SECTION 119.0713, FLORIDA STATUTES (Improper release of EEOC Complaint)
This is action against DeBary for violations of Florida’s Public Records Act …Admitted this is action for alleged violations of the Public Records Act of Florida. Denied that Tebor is entitled to any relief.Tebo filed an EEOC Complaint against DeBary City Manager, Dan Parrott Admitted that Ms. Tebo filed an EEOC complaint against the City of DeBary; Otherwise denied.Pursuant to Chapter 119.0713(1) an active EEOC Complaint is exempt and is not considered to be a public record that can be requested. Admitted that pursuant to Chapter 119.0713(1) an active EEOC complaint is exempt. Otherwise denied.
On March 17, 2015 DeBary released Tebo’s EEOC Complaint via electronic mail to Mark Harper at the News Journal Admitted; DeBary violated Section 119.0713(1) when it released Tebo’s EEOC Complaint Admitted;
Numerous Articles have been printed in the local News Journal regarding Tebo’s EEOC Complaint directly causing harm to Tebo’s reputation and Tebo’s ability to find work. Denied
This part is interesting especially since Tebo already was working for the Town of White Springs who ignored the Media after asking for an explanation from Tebo
Tebo has suffered irreparable injury as DeBary continues to discuss the EEOC Complaint with the public, including the media Denied; As a result Tebo’s ability to find comparable employment has been adversely impacted Denied; Tebo has no adequate remedy other than an injunction to prohibit Debary from violating Section 119.0713(1); Denied
DeBary affirmatively alleged that EEOC complaints are not confidential documents; they are documents subject to an exemption. Therefore, the City was not prohibited from disclosing such documents.
DeBary affirmatively alleged that there was no unreasonable delay in the offered production of the records to Tebo.
DeBary affirmatively alleged that any delay in the production of records sought by Ms. Tebo was due to her refusal to comply with fee provision authorized by Florida Statute Section 119.07 (4)