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April 17, 2024

College of DuPage – Some things never change…

By Kirk Allen & John Kraft

On May 18, 2015

DuPage Co. (ECWd)

It would appear some things never change when it comes to Freedom of Information requests (FOIA) at the College of DuPage.  They have once again failed to comply with responding in a timely manner.

From day one, the Board of Trustees have a legal obligation to appoint a FOIA officer.  Yes, the college has one, however, it is clear that person has a history of non-compliance.  I believe in the past the blame could be placed on Breuder, the disgraced President, because nothing got sent out the door without his approval.  With Breuder out of the picture, what is the excuse now?

The request was simple:

“Copy of all forms of communication sent and received by all Board of Trustee members during the Organizational and special meeting held on April 30th. This would include all text messages, voice mail, messages, voice to text messages, instant messages on their computer and or emails. These communications would be only those related to COD business and include both COD owned equipment and their personal devices if used for such business at any time, which would include the sending of or receipt of above referenced communications.

I asked for this information because it appeared one board member was receiving talking points on their computer which were used to complain about issues on the agenda during the organizational meeting.

The request was extended an additional 5 days because they claimed a “substantial number of records need to be collected and such records have to be examined by appropriate personnel.” 

We have confirmed that extension came before a single board member was contacted for the requested information. 

If they never contacted the board members for the information how is it that they would have a substantial number of records to be collected? That little fact indicates their extension is invalid and a violation of FOIA, once again. 

We have heard the 5 day extension excuse in the past only to wait another 5 days and receive nothing.   This extension letter claimed the records would be provided today.  It is past business hours and still nothing from COD as was claimed.

Message to the new trustees:  Provide the records requested and then appoint a FOIA officer as required by law and hold them accountable to the law!

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  • ECWDogs
    Posted at 17:52h, 18 May

    College of DuPage – Some things never change!

  • PeggyB
    Posted at 14:41h, 19 May

    What is the penalty for non-compliance of FOIA or violation of OMA? Until the AG puts some bite into these violations they are not going to comply. After reading the OMA I asked myself this very question – where is the penalty? I have seen very few times when any fine has been handed down and it has been minimal at best. The “possibility of jail time” but what are the chances of that every happening? Where is the real problem here?