COVID-19 open meeting and public records policy and guidance

Beryl Lipton filed this request with the Cambridge City Clerk of Cambridge, MA.
Tracking #

P200239-042320

Due May 7, 2020
Est. Completion None
Status
Awaiting Response

Communications

From: Beryl Lipton


To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Massachusetts Public Records Law, I hereby request the following records:

Any and all policies, procedures, and other guidance affecting this jurisdiction's compliance with and application of public record and open meeting laws during the emergency response to COVID-19.

Please provide any guidance provided or requirements imposed by state or legislative officials. Please also provide any internal guidance regarding processing and fulfillment of public record requests.

Please provide all relevant links to open meetings being held electronically and the url or other online location for notices about public meetings being conducted by agencies in this jurisdiction.

I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as we believe this request is in the public interest, as suggested but not stipulated by the recommendations of the Massachusetts Supervisor of Public Records. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.

I expect the request to be filled in an accessible format, including for screen readers, which provide text-to-speech for persons unable to read print. Files that are not accessible to screen readers include, for example, .pdf image files as well as physical documents.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Beryl Lipton

From: Cambridge City Clerk

Dear Beryl
Lipton: Your
public records request has been received by the City of Cambridge, and is being
processed in accordance with Public Records Law.  Your request was
received in this office on 4/23/2020 and has been given
the reference number P200239-042320 for tracking
purposes. Please be aware that the City of Cambridge Offices will be closed except for essential services from March 17 through May 4th as an emergency measure to assist in containment of the COVID-19 crisis, pursuant to the emergency guidelines announced by Governor Baker. Due to this unexpected temporary emergency closure, the standard public records response deadlines are automatically extended, and public record request responses may be paused until the City Offices re-open. Please note for your additional information: The Massachusetts Public Records Law does not require
a governmental body to create new information, to do legal research, or to
answer questions. Sincerely, Seah Levy Public
Records Access Officer
City of Cambridge, Law Department
City Hall, 795 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139
(617) 349-4121 |  Fax:  (617) 349-4134 slevy@cambridgema.gov (mailto:slevy@cambridgema.gov)

From: Cambridge City Clerk

Hello,

Unfortunately your email was not recognized and has not been routed accordingly. Description: TO: "City of Cambridge Law Department"[cambridgema@mycusthelp.net]

Cambridge City Clerk
PRL Office
795 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02139
May 22, 2020
This is a follow up to request number P200239-042320:
To Whom It May Concern:
I wanted to follow up on the following Massachusetts Public Records Law request, copied below, and originally submitted on April 23, 2020. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response. You had assigned it reference number #P200239-042320.
Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.
Filed via MuckRock.com
E-mail (Preferred): requests@muckrock.com
Upload documents directly: https://accounts.muckrock.com/accounts/login/?next=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.muckrock.com%2Faccounts%2Flogin%2F%3Fnext%3D%252Faccounts%252Fagency_login%252Fcambridge-city-clerk-186%252Fcovid-19-open-meeting-and-public-records-policy-and-guidance-92371%252F%253Femail%253Dcambridgema%252540mycusthelp.net&url_auth_token=AAAggP_E_ZtBeMbnrrJ9Vav1bKk%3A1jc3Yk%3AMovrSWx9gOM1JS5XMuFhKS1Lhc4
Is this email coming to the wrong contact? Something else wrong? Use the above link to let us know.
For mailed responses, please address (see note):
MuckRock News
DEPT MR 92371
411A Highland Ave
Somerville, MA 02144-2516
PLEASE NOTE: This request was filed by a MuckRock staff reporter. Also note that improperly addressed (i.e., with the requester's name rather than "MuckRock News" and the department number) requests might be returned as undeliverable.
---
On April 23, 2020:
Subject: Public Records Request :: P200239-042320
Dear Beryl
Lipton: Your
public records request has been received by the City of Cambridge, and is being
processed in accordance with Public Records Law.  Your request was
received in this office on 4/23/2020 and has been given
the reference number P200239-042320 for tracking
purposes. Please be aware that the City of Cambridge Offices will be closed except for essential services from March 17 through May 4th as an emergency measure to assist in containment of the COVID-19 crisis, pursuant to the emergency guidelines announced by Governor Baker. Due to this unexpected temporary emergency closure, the standard public records response deadlines are automatically extended, and public record request responses may be paused until the City Offices re-open. Please note for your additional information: The Massachusetts Public Records Law does not require
a governmental body to create new information, to do legal research, or to
answer questions. Sincerely, Seah Levy Public
Records Access Officer
City of Cambridge, Law Department
City Hall, 795 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139
(617) 349-4121 |  Fax:  (617) 349-4134 slevy@cambridgema.gov (mailto:slevy@cambridgema.gov)
---
On April 23, 2020:
Subject: Massachusetts Public Records Law Request: COVID-19 open meeting and public records policy and guidance
To Whom It May Concern:
Pursuant to the Massachusetts Public Records Law, I hereby request the following records:
Any and all policies, procedures, and other guidance affecting this jurisdiction's compliance with and application of public record and open meeting laws during the emergency response to COVID-19.
Please provide any guidance provided or requirements imposed by state or legislative officials. Please also provide any internal guidance regarding processing and fulfillment of public record requests.
Please provide all relevant links to open meetings being held electronically and the url or other online location for notices about public meetings being conducted by agencies in this jurisdiction.
I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as we believe this request is in the public interest, as suggested but not stipulated by the recommendations of the Massachusetts Supervisor of Public Records. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.
I expect the request to be filled in an accessible format, including for screen readers, which provide text-to-speech for persons unable to read print. Files that are not accessible to screen readers include, for example, .pdf image files as well as physical documents.
In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.
Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 business days, as the statute requires.
Sincerely,
Beryl Lipton
Filed via MuckRock.com
E-mail (Preferred): requests@muckrock.com
Upload documents directly: https://accounts.muckrock.com/accounts/login/?next=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.muckrock.com%2Faccounts%2Flogin%2F%3Fnext%3D%252Faccounts%252Fagency_login%252Fcambridge-city-clerk-186%252Fcovid-19-open-meeting-and-public-records-policy-and-guidance-92371%252F%253Femail%253Dcambridgema%252540mycusthelp.net&url_auth_token=AAAggP_E_ZtBeMbnrrJ9Vav1bKk%3A1jc3Yk%3AMovrSWx9gOM1JS5XMuFhKS1Lhc4
Is this email coming to the wrong contact? Something else wrong? Use the above link to let us know.
For mailed responses, please address (see note):
MuckRock News
DEPT MR 92371
411A Highland Ave
Somerville, MA 02144-2516
PLEASE NOTE: This request was filed by a MuckRock staff reporter. Also note that improperly addressed (i.e., with the requester's name rather than "MuckRock News" and the department number) requests might be returned as undeliverable.

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