Pashman Stein's OPRA Cases Make News
Several of Pashman Stein’s OPRA cases have been covered extensively by the press lately. Here is a rundown of the coverage.
McClimate v. Cumberland County
The Daily Journal has covered McClimate v. Cumberland County, a case where Pashman Stein has filed a suit on behalf of a retired county employee who seeks records pertaining to her insurance coverage. Despite repeated requests that the county provide the actual cost sheet that Horizon Blue Cross gave the county, the county instead insisted on providing only a summary chart that it created. Ms. McClimate seeks the actual cost breakdown from Horizon so that she can determine whether the County is charging her the proper premium.
Paff v. Bayonne
The Jersey Journal recently covered Paff v. City of Bayonne, a case where Pashman Stein represented open government proponent John Paff in a quest for records pertaining to two settlement agreements. Mr. Paff sought the agreements, or, in the event the agreements were not finalized, correspondence related to the settlement. Bayonne denied the request, saying any such correspondence would be exempt pursuant to the attorney-client privilege. After Mr. Paff filed his suit and argued that correspondence between adversaries is not privileged, Bayonne admitted that it should have stated that no such correspondence even existed. Bayonne settled the case by admitting its error and paying Mr. Paff’s attorneys’ fees.
Gilleran v. Township of Bloomfield
Patricia Gilleran’s security camera case continues to get news coverage. Pashman Stein secured a victory for Ms. Gilleran in the trial court and in the Appellate Division, where both courts held that Ms. Gilleran was entitled to security footage from a camera outside Bloomfield’s municipal building. The case is now pending in the Supreme Court. Debbie Gallant wrote an article for the Society of Professional Journalists, detailing Ms. Gilleran’s case and the quest to obtain security camera footage from Bloomfield. Bloomfield Life, Baristanet, and Essex News Daily have also recently covered Ms. Gilleran’s case.
Paff v. Moorestown
Numerous newspapers, including the Philadelphia Inquirer, are covering John Paff’s OPRA lawsuit against the Moorestown Township. Mr. Paff filed suit to obtain minutes from an October 2012 meeting of the Moorestown Ethical Standards Board. After Mr. Paff filed suit and argued that public access to minutes cannot be delayed for more than three years and that the agency should release the unapproved minutes, the Board rushed to convene a meeting to approve the 2012 minutes and then released them to Mr. Paff.
DeSanctis v. Borough of Belmar
More Monmouth Musings is covering a lawsuit Pashman Stein filed on behalf of Joy DeSanctis, who is seeking e-mail correspondence between Belmar officials and FEMA regarding Superstorm Sandy funds and the building of the pavilions. Belmar refused to search for e-mail correspondence, insisting that DeSanctis needed to tell her the exact names of the Belmar officials or FEMA officials who were communicating with each other. Ms. DeSanctis argues that she has no way of knowing such information, but that Belmar certainly knows and that her request is valid pursuant to Burke v. Brandes, 429 N.J. Super. 169 (2012).