Concerned Local Resident Files Records Lawsuit Against Town of Worcester
Fed up with culture of secrecy, Anthony Sleck files 11-count complaint
Concerned local resident Anthony Sleck is fed up with the Town of Worcester. He’s fed up with the Town’s refusal to turn over records. He’s fed up with the Town Clerk, Sheila Hook, making it almost impossible to schedule a time to view records at town hall. He’s fed up with the ridiculous claim that it costs $0.50 to photocopy a single page. He’s fed up with a culture of secrecy that puts up roadblocks to transparency at every opportunity.
Now he’s decided to do something about it. On October 14, Sleck filed a lawsuit in Price County Circuit Court alleging that the Town has violated Wisconsin’s Open Records Law in many different ways. His attorney, Tom Kamenick of the Wisconsin Transparency Project, filed the suit after a letter in March failed to improve the Town’s practices and attitude.
The suit raises the following claims:
2 counts of failing to turn over applications
1 count of wantonly destroying records
3 counts of ignoring record requests
1 count of refusing permission to inspect records in person
1 count of charging an illegal fee for records
3 counts of failing to inform Sleck of his appeal rights
“All of these are separate violations of different provisions of the Open Records Law,” explained Kamenick. “Each makes the Town liable for attorney fees, court costs, and statutory damages. Several of the claims include requests for punitive damages, as the Town has repeatedly and intentionally chosen to balk Sleck.”
“I have continually asked for truth & transparency from our Town Board,” said Sleck. “And have constantly been told to sit down and be quiet. We don't want secrets kept from us by our Town Board anymore.”