GC Kevin Reed’s public records office finally admits they have DeVos deal docs

But what did Reed promise UO would do? It’s now almost 4 weeks six weeks since I asked for this agreement. Eventually they’ll run out of ways to hide it:

09/28/2018

Dear Mr. Harbaugh:

The University of Oregon, Office of Public Records has received your public records request for “The document I am looking for is called a “Facilitated Resolution Agreement” and it was signed by General Counsel Kevin Reed on or about August 21.” on 09/21/2018, attached.

The University is the custodian of at least some of the records you have requested. …

You don’t say.

9/21/2018 update: GC Kevin Reed cuts deal with Betsy DeVos & wants $378.49 to show the terms

After proposing to charge me $378.49 for the agreement docs, Reed’s Public Records Office is now claiming that there is no agreement:

On Friday Sep 21, 2018, at 2:41 PM, Public Record Requests <pubrec@uoregon.edu> wrote:

Dear Mr. Harbaugh,

There would be no charge to respond to your request for “a copy of any resolution agreements or similar, between OCR and the University of Oregon, from Jan 1 2018 to the present”, as the University possesses no responsive records. Do you wish to narrow your request, and thus consider it closed, or send a check for the remainder of your request?

Thank you for contacting the office with your request. …

But of course there’s an agreement:

Dear Ms Thornton –

The document I am looking for is called a “Facilitated Resolution Agreement” and it was signed by General Counsel Kevin Reed on or about August 21.

I’m ccing Mr. Reed, as he should be able to provide this public record without additional delays or fees. (Technically this document could be called an agreement between the complainant and UO, but I think he knows exactly what I’m looking for.)

I’ll consider this request closed when I receive this document.

Thanks, …

So what does it require UO to do? Stay tuned, we’ll get this deal out into the sunlight eventually.

9/20/2018: I’m no originalist, but I thought treaties with alien potentates required Senate approval.

Back in April Around the O posted the news of a federal Office of Civil Rights investigation of UO:

The University of Oregon has been notified by the Office for Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education that an investigation is being undertaken in response to a complaint from a former student who was a respondent in the campus’ Title IX processes.  The complaint alleges that UO’s processes discriminated against the student on the basis of sex.

In its notification letter, OCR states that, “OCR’s decision to open an investigation does not reflect an opinion by OCR regarding the merits of the allegation or the university’s compliance status with respect to federal civil rights laws.”

The University is deeply committed to maintaining a campus free from discrimination and harassment. Not only will we cooperate fully with the review, we will work with OCR to demonstrate our commitment to a fair, compliant and effective Title IX program. We are proud to have developed policies, procedures and practices that provide for the prompt and equitable resolution of such complaints.

During the course of the OCR inquiry, the university will not be able to share any additional information.

Presumably this relates to the 2016 case of a male UO student who sued several UO administrators after they suspended him for a year for allegedly engaging in unwanted sexual contact with a female student. That federal court docket is here: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/6121360/doe-v-university-of-oregon/. The (amended) complaint:

 

Rumor down at the faculty club is that in late August GC Reed signed a resolution agreement with the respondent’s lawyer that had been negotiated with the OCR. The terms reportedly include changes to UO’s Student Conduct Code and a requirement that UO hire an administrator to represent respondents in sexual assault/harassment cases.

Are these rumors correct? Around the O is strangely silent on this. So two weeks ago I asked Reed’s Public Records Office. A week later I got this response:

09/13/2018

Dear Mr. Harbaugh:

The University of Oregon has received your public records request for “… 1) a copy of any resolution agreements or similar, between OCR and the University of Oregon, from Jan 1 2018 to the present. 2) any correspondence between OCR and the University of Oregon related to OCR investigations, from Jan 1 2018 to the present” on 09/06/2018, attached. With this email, the office is providing you with an estimate to respond to your request.

The office estimates the actual cost of responding to your request to be $378.49. Upon receipt of a check made payable to the University of Oregon for that amount, the office will proceed to locate, copy, and provide the records you have requested that are not exempt from disclosure. Your check may be sent to the attention of Office of Public Records, 6207 University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403-6207.

I note you requested a waiver based on an assertion that release of these documents is in the public interest. The office has performed the three-part analysis of your request, has determined that your request does not meet the public interest test, and has exercised its discretion to deny your request for a fee waiver. Upon receipt of payment outlined above, the office will begin to prepare your requested documents.

Please note that if the cost of preparing the documents for you is less than the estimate, we will refund the difference. If the cost of preparing the records for you exceeds the estimate, however, you may be charged for the difference.  …

So I followed up with this:

Date: September 13, 2018 at 4:58:05 PM PDT

Dear Ms Thornton,

How much would you charge for just

1) a copy of any resolution agreements or similar, between OCR and the University of Oregon, from Jan 1 2018 to the present. ?

Thanks, Bill Harbaugh

Still no response.

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2 Responses to GC Kevin Reed’s public records office finally admits they have DeVos deal docs

  1. FOIA says:

    If they try to bill you for anyone’s time you can politely remind them that administrators are salaried and need to put in the extra hours their duties require to get the job done at no additional expense. You are only responsible for reimbursing the actual costs incurred by the University to get your information, you don’t have to pay a penalty just because someone had to stay past three pm on a Friday. You might have to pay for a couple hours of classified staff time at most. In this case Mr. Reed’s time is already bought and paid for. If you want to make change consider reimbursing at full cost with complaint and suing for your refund. Don’t settle and get some judgments on paper to back up your future requests.

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    Rating: +8 (from 12 votes)
  2. The interested public says:

    For the record, I’m a part of the public. I’m interested!

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    Rating: +8 (from 12 votes)

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