Rhode Island Attorney General Peter Kilmartin said on Friday that the town of Warren will pay a $1,500 fine to the state after it allegedly violated open records laws by not responding to a request for information within the allotted time period.
Joelle Sylvia, an attorney at the law office of Kelly & Mancini, filed an open records request with the town on March 11. She was looking for several different documents kept by Warren’s clerk and building official. Town officials allegedly didn’t provide the information that was requested or a response within the allotted 10 days required by law. The initial time frame was even extended, but the town still did not respond.
Under the law, if a government entity denies a request, it must prove specific reasons in a written response. The response must be given within 10 business days. If an entity doesn’t respond within the 10 days, it is counted as a denial. The entity can also extend by 20 days if it’s found that the entity didn’t have enough time to respond to a request.