City finally responds to resident’s PRA request

Lassen County resident Chris Cole finally got a Tuesday, May 26, electronic acknowledgement of his April 15 California Public Records Act request from a legal assistant at the law firm that serves as city attorney — 41 days after he filed it.

The law firm wrote it expects to provide whatever information that exists relevant to Cole’s request on or before June 15.

According to California Government Code Section 6256, a public agency must respond to a PRA request within 10 days.

According to the Tuesday, May 26 letter from the Prentice/Long law firm (with offices in Redding and Fresno), it now “represents the city of Susanville in the capacity as city attorney,” and the firm acknowledges receipt of Cole’s RPPRA request.

The letter, signed by Caren C. Miller, a legal assistant with the firm, reports Cole’s PRA request was “inadvertently overlooked.”

According to the letter to Cole, “The city of Susanville has been working with limited staff resources, and the Public Records Act request was inadvertently overlooked. The city will work to compile the records responsive to your request, to the extent they exist, and will respond when they are able. We anticipate having a response to you on or before June 15, 2020. Thank you for you patience in this regard … ”

A copy of the letter also was sent to Kevin Jones, interim city administrator.

Cole filed the PRA request with the city April 15, and when he didn’t receive a response, he submitted his request again April 29.

Cole’s requested: “1. All legal expenses incurred by the city from outside and in-house legal services billed regarding the termination and litigation of former Susanville Police Department officers Sergeant Mike Bollinger and Lieutenant Matt Wood from the beginning of the events to today’s date, 04/15/2020. 2. All expenses or services billed to the city by the private investigator in the investigation of the hiring of the former Chief of Police John King. 3. All available and/or public documents on the aforementioned investigation which you are able to provide.”