Constiuent Request 311 Data

Barry Rafkind filed this request with the Information Technology of Somerville, MA.
Est. Completion None
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From: Barry Rafkind

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the state Freedom of Information Act, G.L.M. c.4, €7, clause 26th, I hereby request the following records:

All records in the City's 311 database in 2009 and 2010. To avoid the need for any redaction reviews, please exclude any fields (such as the description) containing personally identifying information., such as name, phone number, and driver's license. Please list all fields excluded.

Please include other fields such as service request type, date/time of request, department completing, length of time to completion, and others that do not contain personally identifying information.

A spreadsheet or other delimited format would be preferable.

Based on the 9/24/2009 ResiStat blog post "DATA AND TECHNOLOGY: Data Captured through 311" located at , it is my understanding that the City uses the Intelligov Software to manage its 311 requests and that the information is stored in a database. Therefore, I assume that retrieving the requested information should require minimal effort from City staff.

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, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, 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.


Barry Rafkind
Filed via
E-mail (Preferred):
Daytime: (617) 299-1832
For mailed responses, please address:
185 Beacon St. #3
Somerville, MA 02143



Just wanted to check in on this request.



Spoke with Karthik Viswanathan on the phone, and resent him and Francis Wright, City Solicitor, a copy of the request.


Called to follow up, but no answer and no voicemail.



Just wanted to follow up on this request.



Hi Karthik and Frank,

This request was first submitted over four months ago. Despite repeated follow up calls and e-mails, we have received no affirmative nor negative response. Please let us know what the status of this request is, and when it can be fulfilled.

From: Barry Rafkind

This message concerns the freedom of information request below. You are receiving this message because contact was either never established or lost between the agency and the requester.

Please review and respond to the request copied below.

From: MuckRock


I'm following up on this again. Please confirm whether this records request is still being processed, as it is one of the oldest in our backlog.

Thank you.

From: Frank Wright

We are looking into it and will get back to you. Thank you. Frank Wright

From: Frank Wright

Dear Mr. Rafkind: You have requested all records in the City's 311 database in 2009 and 2010. I am informed there are 48,085 requests on file for service from 2009-2010 (this is excluding all calls for information) excluding any fields (such as the description) containing personally identifying information, such as name, phone number, and driver's license. The City estimates it will take approximately three (3) hours to segregate these records. The cost to do so is $74.28 ($24.76 hourly rate x 3 hours). Should you wish to receive the documents, please forward your check in that amount, payable to the 'City of Somerville,' to my attention.

Our apologies for the delay in responding to this request. There was some confusion in thinking it had already been responded to by the city.

From: Barry Rafkind

Thank you, Mr. Wright. And thanks to MuckRock for staying on top of this request on my behalf!

Mr. Wright, this data would only be useful to me if it could be provided as "a spreadsheet or other delimited format" as I originally requested. And to be clear, I am referring to formats such as Excel or CSV, but definitely not PDF nor any image format. Would you please confirm if that is possible?

From: Frank Wright

I am informed that the information can be provided in a CSV/Excel format. Should you wish to receive the documents, please forward your check in the amount of $74.28, payable to the 'City of Somerville,' to my attention.


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