A Munroe Falls City Councilman took legal action Tuesday afternoon to obtain public records which he said city officials have not provided to him.
Councilman Mike Barnes filed a complaint in Summit County Common Pleas Court against both the city of Munroe Falls and Munroe Falls Mayor James Armstrong to compel the parties to release public records that Barnes said he has sought — but not received — at various times during the past year.
When reached by the Stow Sentry Tuesday afternoon, Armstrong said he had not seen the complaint and could not offer an immediate comment.
Barnes is seeking a writ of mandamus ordering the city and the mayor to release all of the requested documents, statutory damages in an amount to be determined by the court if the defendants do not comply with a court order, and attorney fees and expenses.
In his complaint, Barnes listed more than 10 separate public records requests he submitted to the city’s finance director and keeper of records, Karen Reynolds, dating back to August 2017.
In a majority of the documented requests, Barnes stated in his complaint that "none of the requested records were provided." For the remaining requests, some information was provided, according to Barnes.
The complaint stated that "some of the same information requested has been prepared and provided to third parties, including other persons making their records requests subsequent to Mr. Barnes."
Among the records requested are dates and costs of seminars attended by city employees, a copy of Munroe Falls Police Chief Jerry Hughes’ employment agreement, information on compensatory time taken by some city employees, a copy of the November 2017 work schedule for the police department and several items related to an apparent dispute that occurred between Armstrong and former Munroe Falls Police Sgt. Robert Post in December 2017.
Reporter Phil Keren can be reached at 330-541-9421, firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter at @keren_phil.