When I made the identical Public Documents request of the town and UMass exactly 10 days ago for their written exchanges since the 1st of January, I was kind of thinking the equation was fairly simple: UMass Bigwig A writes to town official Bigwig B, who then responds: that equals one response (C) captured by my request.
So A + B should = C, or B + A should = the same C.
Of course the reason for the redundancy is to keep people honest. If each party knows I'm double checking by making the identical request of both parties then they will be careful in giving me all the documents.
Kind of like cops putting two suspects in separate rooms for an interrogation. In journalism it's called "verification".
So I'm trying to figure out why UMass (A) is charging 12 times the amount the town (B) is charging to fulfill the identical request (C)? Anyone?
#####From: Roussel, Debra
To: Larry Kelley
Cc: Ziomek, David
Sent: Thu, Apr 18, 2013 6:22 pm
Subject: RE: Public Documents Request
Good afternoon Mr. Kelley,
Thus far we have confirmed a minimum of eight hours of staff time to review, pdf and redact as necessary the documents you have requested. The lowest paid individual able to produce the documents is paid approximately $32 an hour. Therefore, if you decide to move forward with the request, you will need to submit a check in the amount of $256.00. This estimate does not include the cost of paper copies, as it was unclear as to the number of copies that were involved.
Debra A. Roussel
Assistant to the Town Manager