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Thursday, March 02, 2006

As the Clock Ticks

FOIL-A-RAMA

So, now that the Council process of reviewing our FOIL request is officially underway, we thought it would be appropriate to see exactly how long it takes the Council folk to determine whether or not the material we requested "is available".

And again, here's a quick refresher of our requested material:

1. A list of the Council's central staff before the firings.
2. Either the list of the 61 staffers fired (or, if it makes it any easier, a list of the central staff after the firings)
3. The calculations behind the percentages they put out by way of a Council spokeswoman on the day of the firings.

We would assume that this information would be ready to go. And we know that if Speaker Quinn wanted this information on her desk, it would be available to her within the hour.

But in the mean time, we sit and we wait, and we watch the clock in the sidebar tick-tock.

And lastly, while we are happy to pay the $.25/copy, we'd prefer to review the efficiently processed information by email. Just pdf the darn thing...

23 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

But remember that item #3 is not really a FOIL request. FOIL is for existing documents and you could rephrase it to ask for any document that shows a calculation of this or that. But you asked for an explanation, which of course FOIL does not require them to make.

1:27 PM

 
Anonymous eric said...

give the council staff a break. yes, they would give the info to quinn within the hour because she can fire them, but especially after last week, im sure council staff would take care of quinn's requests over the request of an anonymous blogger.

having said that, i hope they take care of it quickly as i am very interested in seeing the results.

1:37 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eric, I think Roomie's point is not to bash the staff; but to indicate that Quinn could make the staff make the answers available ASAP. Also, it has now been over 7 days since the request was first submitted. How long could this possibly take?

And since you, too, are interested in the results of the request, it doesn't make sense to simply compare Quinn's needs to those of one "anonymous blogger".

1:47 PM

 
Anonymous eric said...

anonymous,
i'm not arguing that quinn's needs are more important. but you can agree that it won't be quinn herself getting this information, it will be her staff. and if you were in quinn's staff's shoes, you would probably take care of what the boss wants you to take care of. and i'm betting the speaker isnt prioritizing the FOIL request very high.

so in that respect, yes, i am simply comparing quinn's needs to those of an anonymous blogger.

2:26 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quinn's staff (ie chuck) has had these numbers for a long time. It should not take them so long to put them out. That is, unless there are reasons to keep us waiting. But in any case, I'm interested in the hires and on how they chose the fire good workers top to bottom and of all ethnic backgrounds solely on the basis of being professionals and not party hacks. That is my question.

3:02 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the fact that quinn is not prioritizing the foil request, as eric suggests, is exactly the reason roomie should continue pressing hard. the reality is that she has the ability to hand all the information over today.

5:03 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

maybe they fired the staffer responsible for FOIL requests? and maybe the $.25 is to outsource the photocopying for the staffer who used to do that?

7:33 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ed O'Malley is the staffer responsible for FOIL requests. He hasn't been fired. On the contrary, as a loyal Queens hack albeit a lazy lawyer, he has been promoted and given a huge raise.
O'Malley is notorious for delaying FOIL responses until the inquirer gives up and goes away.

8:28 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

8:28 In case they haven't noticed, the inquirer isn't likely to give up or go away. If she has nothing to hide, she would do herself a big favor by getting all this info out right away. It should have been done already without a FOIL request. Stonewalling creates the impression that the numbers indicate that there was discrimination in the selection of who was to be fired so that Manton's dead weight could be hired. It doesn't take much to figure out that they could come up with the numbers in an hour if she wanted them to do that and that they could release the info just as quickly.

10:26 PM

 
Anonymous eric said...

all i'm saying is, if i was in quinn and her staff's shoes, i would not prioritize this at all. in her eyes, its just some anonymous request from some blog that can be ignored. i think the FOIL request would have more impact if it one of the people commenting here sent in the request. or a list of people sent in requests, so she knows that people actually care.

she thinks she can ignore it because she thinks it doesnt really matter to anyone but a small handful of people, who can easily be ignored.

1:35 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

how come the red ax (the mantoniette) is being called "speaker cato", can anyone explain?

8:58 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cato Institute (among other interpretations), meaning Quinn has turned to the right in addition to being jowly.

9:21 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it's a bitch that clock. it just keeps on ticking. hilarious!

11:19 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eric, If she thought this was a small group of people who could be ignored, she wouldn't have so many Quinnettes posting for her here and on the Politicker trying to defend the indefensible. She knows that these comments (especially those on The Politicker) are seen by many people, incuding many reporters. The reason she's been stonewalling may well be that she actually has something to hide. Otherwise, she probably would have released everything without a FOIL request and not dragged this out.

3:45 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I dislike Quinn as much as many, but stop this paranoia about stonewalling. It just makes the commenters look naive. To the extent that they may acknowledge or even respond to the FOIL request, it's taking it's normal course and hardy tardy. Sure, government does its best to delay and obfuscate, but we're hardly at that point. Geez. It might take a few more weeks as that's how the bureaucracy works anywhwere, all the time. I've done FOILs in a number of agencies and this is nothing.

4:01 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

4:01 She doesn't need a FOIL request to release the info. She could have done that in less than a day. If she had nothing to hide, it's very likely she would have done just that already. What she's doing is whatcha call stonewalling plain and simple.

6:25 PM

 
Blogger Frank Padavan said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5:35 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

6:25 - You're right. She (or any agency head) does not need a FOIL to release the information. But you can't infer she is wanting to hide something just because she hasn't. In many agencies, the head might not even know about a FOIL request; it might not have filtered up to the top. I am no fan of Quinn and have been outspoken in criticizing her on substantive and policy grounds. But to cry stonewalling after the relative short time is naive.

9:46 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

9:46 Not know about it? She's had her Quinnettes monitoring The Politicker and this blog and posting repeatedly on both. The FOIL request was not the first resort to get the info from her, it was the last resort. Her stonewalling is the reason for the FOIL request. If she did not have something to hide,she probably would have wanted to show that and the FOIL request would not have been made. It would have been unnecessary.

12:21 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ed O'Malley has been promoted? I demand a tax refund!

2:23 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

blah, blah, blah. You Quinn haters wouldn't know what a coverup looked like if it bit you on the ass. What will you all do when you finally discover that this is a complete non-story?

And you call OTHER people hacks???

5:05 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quinnette at 5:05 - - She has no good answer on the merits or you wouldn't be spewing forth this kind of garbage. Do you really think that you're going to convince anyone of anything with that nonsensical non-response?

If it was a non-story, she would already have released the info to prove it. It sure looks like she has something to hide.

5:31 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Roomie: Are you planning on FOILing for the list of new hires and their salaries? Also, how about FOILing for the raises doled out to dodos like Rob Newman (he who drafted the legislation where the Court of Appeals held that the Mayor may essentially ignore Council legislation, even when they go through the charade of override) or Laura Popa (she who drafted the Wal-mart legislation which violates not one, but three state and federal laws). Now that should be very interesting!

5:03 PM

 

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