On April 16, 2016, at 2 p.m., Mercer County Assignment Judge Mary C. Jacobson will hear my Open Public Records Act case against the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Docket No. MER-L-303-14. The hearing will be held at the Mercer County Courthouse, 400 S. Warren St, 4th Floor, Trenton and I am being represented by Walter M. Luers of Clinton.
Here is the issue in the suit. The Fish and Game Council is a Division of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. I requested, pursuant to the Open Public Records Act (OPRA), a roster showing the names of the Council members along with each member's city and county of residence. The Council's position is that since its members are "volunteers who have responsibility in developing Hunting rules and regulations, compliance, and making policy recommendations to the Governor's Office . . . [t]here is a high possibility of harassment, from individuals who do not agree with certain policies/regulations or who may have lost their license due to violating the rules." My position is that disclosure of the Council members' cities and counties of residence is not the type of information that needs to be kept confidential. (Note: I have not requested nor do I seek the actual addresses of the Council members.) Further, the Council's position conflicts with the Governor's practice of identifying the Council members' cities and counties of residences in that office's press releases. Walter M. Luers of Clinton is representing me in this matter. Case documents are on-line here.
This hearing date and hour is subject to change. If you plan to attend, please call the court offices at 609-571-4499 the day prior to confirm that the hearing date and hour have not changed.