Sussex County Schools violate VA FOIA twice, lie about it

For the past several weeks, I have been trying to get a FOIA request answered from the Sussex County Schools Division. Their efforts at trying to obstruct and make excuses about their failures under the law, has led me to decide to take them to General District Court.

The paperwork necessary for this will be filed soon.

At issue was a simple request to look at specifications and/or manuals in the construction of the new school in the division. There is evidence that material substitution took place, meaning that non-approved materials were substituted for what the plans called for.

The school division seems to want to keep this quiet for some reason, and the warranty on the construction ends for good on August 31, 2014.

When non-approved materials are used in construction, it is for a reason. Money is saved in the process and that money goes somewhere. The materials called for in the plans in this case are a lot more expensive than their supposed substitute. Meaning the taxpayers of Sussex County will be left footing the bill for someone’s cover-up of irregularities in the construction of the school.

The money difference could have been spent elsewhere in the construction, or something else could have happened to it. I have no idea. I just know the school division wants to keep everything a big secret. To obstruct and waste time in the administration of the public’s business is like lying to a partner. We trust the government to do the right thing.

And that is why the FOIA law exists. To root out the truth from public bodies that would tell you one thing and do another while you are not looking.

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Published by

Mark Brooks

Independent Journalist/Photographer --- Retired Land Surveyor originally from Colorado. USN Veteran. Involved as a citizen and journalist in politics and open government locally and sometimes statewide. Interests: photography, music, justice and equality for everyone.

2 thoughts on “Sussex County Schools violate VA FOIA twice, lie about it”

  1. Reblogged this on The Maple Leaf and commented:
    This is an interesting story from Sussex County, Virginia detailing some interesting operations of their school board, FOIA requests, fudged numbers and more that we will be following here on The Maple Leaf Blog. Some aspects of this particular case parallel those of our ongoing battle with Smyth County School Board for disclosure of appropriate public information.

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  2. This is a very interesting article. I hope to see more about this case and follow it to see the outcome. Presently we are dealing with some issues of public school board disclosure, corruption, conspiracy and fudged numbers in Smyth County, Virginia and particularly where our community and rural school are concerned. You may find some interesting reading at our community blog detailing some of the actions we’ve engaged in as a community in the battle to keep our school open and expose some of those far-fetched figures that are being put out there.

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