Author: Thomas J. Cafferty

Recent New Jersey Law Division Decision Highlights Importance of Making Government Records Requests Under Both OPRA and the Common Law

The right of public access to information about sexual harassment claims brought against a public entity is the focus of a recent decision of the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division (Atlantic County). The decision illustrates the interplay between the common law right of access to government records and the New Jersey Open Public Records Act (“OPRA”), as well as the importance of making a request for a government record under both.

McGee v. East Amwell – The “Advisory, Consultative or Deliberative” Exemption to The New Jersey Open Public Records Act (OPRA)

On November 16, 2010, the Appellate Division, in McGee v. Township of East Amwell, Dkt. No. A-1233-09T2, 2010 N.J. Super., held that emails among township officials and a former supervisor regarding an employee’s termination from employment are subject to the “advisory, consultative or deliberative” exemption to the New Jersey Open Public Records Act. Plaintiff Joan McGee had appealed the Government Records Council’s (GRC) final decision denying her request for reconsideration of the GRC’s decision that the emails were exempt from disclosure.