Transparency-Friendly IAG Ruling Slowed By Bureaurcracy?

The Illinois Attorney General’s office ruled in favor of county documents being turned over is being stymied by the slow flow of information about the ruling, the Galesburg Register-Mail alleges in a story it published Saturday.

The paper filed a FOIA request  in July 2012 for court documents pertaining to three sexual harassment suits filed against State’s Attorney John Pepmeyer in 2007. The paper contacted the state’s Public Access Counselor to review the denial on Sept. 19, and the IAG’s decision was published Jan. 29.

From the Register-Mail:

The Illinois Attorney General’s office has ruled that Knox County must turn over documents detailing the settlement amounts of three sexual harassment suits levied against the county and State’s Attorney John Pepmeyer “immediately.”

However, there was no one at the County Courthouse who could make the documents available Friday, the day The Register-Mail received the ruling from the attorney general’s office.

Calls to County Treasurer Robin Davis and County Board President Greg “Chops” Bacon were unreturned. Pepmeyer said he was not aware of the ruling at the time, and said it would be unethical of him to comment on a matter that is still pending in court.

Is this an example of the system working, or will logistical roadblocks like these continue to interfere with FOIA’s effectiveness? Share your thoughts in the comments.