Monday, September 9, 2013

45-day statute of limitations on GRC actions sought.

In an August 29, 2013 letter to the New Jersey Government Records Council (GRC), Dominic P. DiYanni of Seaside Heights, attorney for Franklin Township Fire District No. 1 Board of Fire Commissioners (Somerset County), is requesting the GRC to grant of stay of Interim Orders in ten (10) denial of access cases.  DiYanni is seeking the stay so that the GRC can rule, one way or the other, on whether Open Public Records Act (OPRA) denial of access complaints brought in the GRC are subject to the same 45-day statute of limitations as similar actions brought in Superior Court.  DiYanni suggests that if the GRC holds that the 45-day limitations does not apply, he will appeal that determination to the Superior Court, Appellate Division.

DiYanni argues that it is illogical to have a 45-day limitations period for the Superior Court while no limitations period applies to actions brought before the GRC. "[R]equestors should not be able to circumvent the 45 day statute of limitations in filing in one of the two venues provided for under the Open Public Records Act by simply waiting as long as they wish to file their matter with the Government Records Council," DiYanni wrote.

DiYanni's letter is on-line here.  The records requestor in the case is Jeff Carter who is represented by John A. Bermingham, Jr. of Camden. 

(Disclosure:  The author, John Paff, serves as a volunteer firefighter in Fire District No. 1 and receives financial compensation from the Fire District in the form of clothing allowances, fire fighting training mileage and meal reimbursements and other amenities.)

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