Ill. AG paying fees over FOIA request

Jessica M. Karmasek Aug. 9, 2011, 5:25pm


SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (Legal Newsline) - Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has been ordered to pay legal costs and fees to a former political opponent who sued her last year under the state's Freedom of Information Act.

William Malan ran against Madigan in 2010 as a Libertarian Party candidate. Madigan also faced Green Party candidate David F. Black and Republican Steve Kim to remain the state's top lawyer.

According to the State Journal-Register, Cook County Circuit Court Judge Mary Mikva this week ordered Madigan to pay Malan nearly $2,400 in fees.

Malan had taken issue with Madigan's Operation Guardian, a nursing home safety initiative.

Last September, the attorney general released results from 21 unannounced nursing home compliance checks conducted over the previous nine months.

Madigan's office identified 124 residents and staff with active arrest warrants living among the elderly nursing home population.

According to the Journal-Register, Malan had asked the Attorney General's Office for detailed records showing what charges led to the warrants and more information on the operation itself, including how much it cost.

Madigan's office would only provide some of the information requested.

Plans for nursing home checks, for example, were exempt, the attorney general had argued.

Malan eventually sued and the judge sided with Madigan, except for a written update on the operation.

Mikva said the document mostly included "past occurrences" and that it wasn't protected by FOIA, the Journal-Register reported.

Madigan's office has provided Malan with a redacted copy of the update, and the judge awarded $2,390 in fees and costs to Malan.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at

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