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November 30, 2011

Access to documents under FOIL limited

Access to documents under FOIL limited
Sinicropi v. Nassau County, 76 AD2d 832

Sinicropi was denied access to certain records related to an administrative disciplinary proceeding.

Citing the McAulay decision (48 NY2d 659), the court refused to order the employer to give the Sinicropi the records he sought, which records the court described as intra-agency memoranda concerning an employee, notes and communications made in preparation of the disciplinary hearing and the transcript of the hearing.

The court viewed this materials as “pre-decisional intra-agency memoranda that are not reflective of final agency policy or determinations” and are therefore exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Law.

Sinicropi had been given a copy of the charges preferred against an employee, the employee's answer to the charges, the "bill of particulars" of the charges and the stipulation of settlement of the disciplinary action. The Court held that further disclosure would be unnecessary and improper.

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