By PETE WALTON
A state Superior Court judge has ordered Bradley Beach to provide him with edited and unedited copies of e-mails which are the subject of a suit by a local resident.
Judge Marc C. Lemieux has ordered the borough to “produce redacted and unredacted copies of missing e-mails” from a June Open Public Records Act request filed by Brigitte McGuire.
Lemieux asked for documentation of “all contested documents and reasons for denial of production to the court by Dec. 1.” The judge will review the submitted documents in his chambers.
A case management conference on the matter is scheduled via Zoom on Jan. 3, 2024. Lemieux will hear the case in his courtroom on Jan. 22 at 9 a.m.
McGuire sued the borough and its municipal clerk, alleging violations of the state’s Open Public Records Act.
She said the borough did not provide unredacted copies of e-mails she requested, and that copies of e-mail correspondence “were requested but never produced.”
McGuire asked for “all correspondence between Councilman [Al] Gubitosi and the administration, including but not limited to Mayor [Larry] Fox, [interim borough administrator] Greg [Fehrenbach] and [former borough administrator] Kim Humphrey regarding 2022 budget [and] municipal spending.”
According to the suit, the borough “redacted broad portions of those e-mails, claiming they were privileged under the advisory, consultative and deliberative privilege.”
“Defendants also did not disclose at all several e-mails that were identified by plaintiff as missing because they were listed on an OPRA log that was produced by defendants in response to a separate OPRA request,” according to the suit.
The suit says that McGuire’s “interest in the records is understanding better how her government works and in engaging in oversight regarding the operations of her municipal government.”