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Old Sun Aug 21, 2005, 12:17pm
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Dear Fellow Officials:

If you feel that the distribution of game assignments is unfair, disparate, disproportionate in your board, and the “powers that be” will not share the “Master Schedule” with the membership, in all likelihood you can make a request for all the games assigned, sorted by each official under the Freedom of Information Law or FOIL.

FOIL is a (I think) a Federal Statute but each state may have its version thereof. Certainly in New York, I have had success in simply writing to the assigners and worded a request for the desired the data.

In NY there is a Committee on Open Government which offers Advisory Opinions on the nuances and cases that have expanded and better explained the whats, wheres, whens, hows and whys of Freedom of Information Law.

In a nutshell, FOIL says that public, municipal or government agencies are subjected to the provisions of FOIL. As such, in some areas, there is a central assigner whose job it is to dole out games for the athletic leagues member schools it serves.

The simplified rationale for FOIL goes like this: Public agencies are virtually completely supported by public funds gathered through various taxes. If you are a citizen, you pay taxes in one form or another and you are entitled to the information available with some limitations on data that is of a private or personal nature: home address, phone number, date of birth, social security number etc.

Below are some helpful NYS Committee on Open Government links. Chances are good that even if you are not in NY, your state probably has similar laws guaranteeing such rights for every citizen.

What does this mean for officials, officiating and equity in assignments: Again, it means you can make a FOIL request for the master schedule of your board’s assignments with whoever the assigner is, even if it a private individual, such as a member of the board itself whether that individual is paid or a volunteer.

Knowledge is power; and, the legal right to know what games are assigned to what individuals by an assigner, gives every official access to the truth about assigning, and thereby goes a step further in ensuring equity for all.

John Visentin
[email protected]
Here are those links to NYS Committee on Open Government (COOG) Freedom of Information Law (FOIL):

Link to NYS FOIL Statute (Law):
1. http://www.dos.state.ny.us/coog/foil2.htm

Link to Advisory Opinions home page — these are non-judicial opinions written by the Executive Director of NYS’s COOG on various issues and questions raised by FOIL requests made by individuals over time:
2. http://www.dos.state.ny.us/coog/findex.html

Link to Advisory Opinion Supporting Requests made for information created by private agencies or individuals, even though unpaid, that supports or is work made performed for public entities such as the assigning of officials to athletic contests for public schools.:
3. AO#8300:*http://www.dos.state.ny.us/coog/ftext/f8300.htm

Finally, it is important to point out that Freedom of Information Law allows whoever is fulfilling the FOIL request to charge $.025 (25 cents) per page of copied materials supplied to a requester. However, in the computer age, most everything data-wise is created and stored electronically via some personal computing applications program such as Microsoft Word or Excel files, which can be effortless manipulated according to whatever criteria or specified parameter one wishes to see (e.g. “all varsity basketball assignments sorted by officials last name...” etc.). This database “cut” or manipulation can then be stored on a CD ROM or attached to an e-mail and sent directly to the requester with much less effort and expense for both parties requester and requestee — this Advisory Opinion #13777) supports this argument:
4. AO#13777: http://www.dos.state.ny.us/coog/ftext/f13777.htm

Additionally, you may wish to consider reviewing the following Advisory Opinions: 8888, 11318, 12305, 12559, 12741 (these are found in the index of Advisory Opinion under the letter “F,” specifically under the keyword category of, “Format, Conversion of”). All of which support the right to received the requested data electronically via e-mail.

Good luck to all who seek the truth and justice.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old Sun Aug 21, 2005, 04:39pm
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Quote:
Originally posted by jcv44wf
Dear Fellow Officials:

If you feel that the distribution of game assignments is unfair, disparate, disproportionate in your board, and the “powers that be” will not share the “Master Schedule” with the membership, in all likelihood you can make a request for all the games assigned, sorted by each official under the Freedom of Information Law or FOIL.

FOIL is a (I think) a Federal Statute but each state may have its version thereof. Certainly in New York, I have had success in simply writing to the assigners and worded a request for the desired the data.

In NY there is a Committee on Open Government which offers Advisory Opinions on the nuances and cases that have expanded and better explained the whats, wheres, whens, hows and whys of Freedom of Information Law.

In a nutshell, FOIL says that public, municipal or government agencies are subjected to the provisions of FOIL. As such, in some areas, there is a central assigner whose job it is to dole out games for the athletic leagues member schools it serves.

The simplified rationale for FOIL goes like this: Public agencies are virtually completely supported by public funds gathered through various taxes. If you are a citizen, you pay taxes in one form or another and you are entitled to the information available with some limitations on data that is of a private or personal nature: home address, phone number, date of birth, social security number etc.

Below are some helpful NYS Committee on Open Government links. Chances are good that even if you are not in NY, your state probably has similar laws guaranteeing such rights for every citizen.

What does this mean for officials, officiating and equity in assignments: Again, it means you can make a FOIL request for the master schedule of your board’s assignments with whoever the assigner is, even if it a private individual, such as a member of the board itself whether that individual is paid or a volunteer.

Knowledge is power; and, the legal right to know what games are assigned to what individuals by an assigner, gives every official access to the truth about assigning, and thereby goes a step further in ensuring equity for all.

John Visentin
[email protected]
Here are those links to NYS Committee on Open Government (COOG) Freedom of Information Law (FOIL):

Link to NYS FOIL Statute (Law):
1. http://www.dos.state.ny.us/coog/foil2.htm

Link to Advisory Opinions home page — these are non-judicial opinions written by the Executive Director of NYS’s COOG on various issues and questions raised by FOIL requests made by individuals over time:
2. http://www.dos.state.ny.us/coog/findex.html

Link to Advisory Opinion Supporting Requests made for information created by private agencies or individuals, even though unpaid, that supports or is work made performed for public entities such as the assigning of officials to athletic contests for public schools.:
3. AO#8300:*http://www.dos.state.ny.us/coog/ftext/f8300.htm

Finally, it is important to point out that Freedom of Information Law allows whoever is fulfilling the FOIL request to charge $.025 (25 cents) per page of copied materials supplied to a requester. However, in the computer age, most everything data-wise is created and stored electronically via some personal computing applications program such as Microsoft Word or Excel files, which can be effortless manipulated according to whatever criteria or specified parameter one wishes to see (e.g. “all varsity basketball assignments sorted by officials last name...” etc.). This database “cut” or manipulation can then be stored on a CD ROM or attached to an e-mail and sent directly to the requester with much less effort and expense for both parties requester and requestee — this Advisory Opinion #13777) supports this argument:
4. AO#13777: http://www.dos.state.ny.us/coog/ftext/f13777.htm

Additionally, you may wish to consider reviewing the following Advisory Opinions: 8888, 11318, 12305, 12559, 12741 (these are found in the index of Advisory Opinion under the letter “F,” specifically under the keyword category of, “Format, Conversion of”). All of which support the right to received the requested data electronically via e-mail.

Good luck to all who seek the truth and justice.


John:

I hate to burst your bubble, but FOIL applies to government documents, not the documents of private organizations. I do not know what propted your rant concerning assignments but if you do not think you are not being treated fairly you need to address your problem with your officiating association.

MTD, Sr.
__________________
Mark T. DeNucci, Sr.
Trumbull Co. (Warren, Ohio) Bkb. Off. Assn.
Wood Co. (Bowling Green, Ohio) Bkb. Off. Assn.
Ohio Assn. of Basketball Officials
Ohio High School Athletic Association
International Assn. of Approved Bkb. Officials
Toledo, Ohio
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 12:10am
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Mark,

Well, as respectfully as I may say this, you're mistaken. FOIL applies to public agencies and their documents or information. Assigners work for school districts and school districts are definitely public agencies, funded by public monies. If you read the Advisory Opinion in link #3 at the bottom of my posting you will see that it clearly explains that subcontractors like officiating organization like IAABO etc. that perform work solely for these public schools/agencies, then material pertaining thereto is FOIL-able.

In fact I have already gotten these assignment schedules for all the schools we serve — because it is covered under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Law.

I am just passing on this information to those who are not on boards as just, equitable and fair as yours. Glad to hear there is on such board that works that way! Hopefully, boards like yours are the rule, and boards like mine are the exception.

I have tried for years, and I do mean years, to ensure parity in assignments on our board. Obtaining the master schedule of assignments allows me and others to draw our own conclusion as to equity by examing this kind of information.

So, now you may understand why I posted "my rant" as you called it. I would not have posted information such as I did if it were false or misleading. I only posted after certifying that assigners schedules are FOIL-able by actually having gotten such information myself.

Thanks for you response.

Sincerely,

John Visentin

[Edited by jcv44wf on Aug 22nd, 2005 at 01:13 AM]
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  #4 (permalink)  
Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 09:38am
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John, were you ever, by chance, a high school teacher at Haldane H.S., N.Y.? If so, Would that explain your expertise re: N.Y. high school legal matters?

[Edited by Jurassic Referee on Aug 22nd, 2005 at 10:41 AM]
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Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 10:24am
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No, why? Who's asking? At least I identify myself by name instead of hiding behind some nickname and then asking personal questions of posters?

One does not have to be involved in legal matters as you say to be informed about the law as it pertains to one's rights.

I seek fairness and protection; not confrontation as you seem to.
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  #6 (permalink)  
Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 03:13pm
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John:

Just why do you have a burr in your britches? Are you a disgruntled sports official or a lawyer trying to drum up some business?

MTD, Sr.
__________________
Mark T. DeNucci, Sr.
Trumbull Co. (Warren, Ohio) Bkb. Off. Assn.
Wood Co. (Bowling Green, Ohio) Bkb. Off. Assn.
Ohio Assn. of Basketball Officials
Ohio High School Athletic Association
International Assn. of Approved Bkb. Officials
Toledo, Ohio
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  #7 (permalink)  
Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 03:33pm
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I talked to a friend who officiates in New York. There, assignors are quasi school employees so one might have access to their records. He was of the opinion that his assignor would never submit to such a request, however.

In much of the rest of the country, assignors are independent contractors who bid for contracts with the schools. As such, their records can be kept secret and and are not subject to any FOIA type regulations.

Peter
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Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 05:19pm
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Smile

Dear His High Holiness,

Gee, I didn't know the Pope was interested in officiating. : )

Well, actually it differs from athletic section to athletic section or even by county.

Where I am, there are 4 assignors for say the schools covered by our board. Of these two are assignors or athletic coordinators that the member schools contract with to assign those games. Those athletic coordinators are employees of the BOCES (Board of Cooperative Educational Services) and that means they are definitely public employees paid with tax dollars.

Of the other two assigners, one is a private individual who supposedly does this out of the kindness of his heart. (yeah ok), and the other guy is paid as a private individual.

So there you have it.

Peace
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Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 06:31pm
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mark T. DeNucci, Sr.
John:

Just why do you have a burr in your britches? Are you a disgruntled sports official or a lawyer trying to drum up some business?

MTD, Sr.
How does a lawyer generate business for things that are perfunctorily guaranteed by the law?

Would it make a difference to you which of those two applied to me? Are you willing to help or just being sympathetic?

I have the sense your questions are rhetorical and you're not interested in my answers in the least. So why be so disingenuously sarcastic?

What's your point? To be confrontational and argumentative?


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  #10 (permalink)  
Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 06:32pm
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Quote:
Originally posted by jcv44wf
Peace
I figured it out! That issue of many-monikers has invaded OF.COM!

jcv44wf is really JRut.
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Pope Francis
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  #11 (permalink)  
Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 07:36pm
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Quote:
Originally posted by jcv44wf
[/B]
I have the sense your questions are rhetorical and you're not interested in my answers in the least.

[/B][/QUOTE]Nope. If you wanna sue somebody, go ahead. Just quit whining about it.

Real officials don't whine.

You sure you never taught at Haldane H.S.? Hmmmmmm.....
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old Mon Aug 22, 2005, 09:38pm
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On the contrary. I am interested in your responses to my questions. I responded to yours but you've yet to answer mine. Guess that's all one needs to know about you.

Nope. Wasn't me.

I have always lived on Long Island. Visentin is not an uncommon name there.

Don't know why you'd continue to be insulting, confrontational and evasive. Again, I think this speaks volumes about your character.

Oh yeah. I never said I wanted to sue somebody or anybody. You said that.

I was a gentleman long before I was an official and real gentlemen don't behave as you have and continue to do.

I not sure you have ever been either a gentleman or a referee base on your comments here to me.


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  #13 (permalink)  
Old Tue Aug 23, 2005, 08:20am
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Quote:
Originally posted by jcv44wf
I was a gentleman long before I was an official and real gentlemen don't behave as you have and continue to do.

I not sure you have ever been either a gentleman or a referee base on your comments here to me.

John;

I used to be called "His Holiness" which was a name given to me about 5 years ago by the editor of this site. However, certain umpires of the Catholic faith were offended by my use of the name by which their Pope is known so I was promoted to "His High Holiness." Besides, I refused to umpire games in a dress.

To answer some of your questions, there aren't any gentlemen here. You are receiving the exact same treatment as every newbie to the site.

Mr. DeNucci and I umpire in Virginia which is about as capitalist a state as exists in the country. We are as anti union and anti worker as they come. The likelihood of any assignor turning over his records is zero. I can understand that in socialist New York these things might be possible. I say this as a member of one of the few umpire unions (recognized by the IRS) outside of MLB in the country.

The tone of the comments directed at you is due to the fact that this and other message boards have a long history of newbies showing up with a litany of complaints, only to disappear into the night after the truth of their complaints has been exposed. We have been lied to and mislead so many times that we assume that any new person who shows up is a liar. You have to establish yourself to obtain the reputation as a teller of truth. The questions that you have been asked are exactly like the ones that a police officer directs at a suspect to a serious crime. Right now, for the purposes of this board, you are suspect and will be treated as such. Answer the questions, establish the facts, and within a few months you will be adopted into the fraternity of interrogators.

Peter
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Old Tue Aug 23, 2005, 09:43am
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Smile

Hey, you know for a guy who has taken the sobriquet you have, it seems fitting your real name would be Peter (Peter, not to insult your intelligence at all, was afterall, as I'm sure you knew is considered to be the First Pope). I am a Catholic and think whoever was or is offended is a pompous ***,

As for your insight, I appreciate it. It does somewhat mitigate the scathing attacks.

Believe me, what I speak with regard to FOIL-ing schedules and assignments is not without cause or without results. I have successfully FOIL-ed two or our area's four assigners. Yes, NY is liberal and socialistic, and I do adhere to some tenets of those ideologies. But, having said that, I also support the notion that both sides of nearly any argument or confrontation has its merits.

The key thing in a democracy is to allow both sides to pursue their goals; for without that a one sided battle is not a battle at all. When both factions promote their ideals vigorously, Plato's "Golden Mean," is usually, ultimately met. Without this give and take of debate we have at best an oligarchy and at worst tyranny.

In the case of my board, and my situation, I have, I believe, reasonably and temperately decided to challenge the what I perceive to be an elitist and exclusionary "good old boy" network of cronyism. And I am truthfully, as God is my witness, not attempting to get any more games for myself. I simply cannot stomach unfairness. That is why I love officiating. I think this makes sense to any judge. I simply want to balance the scales of power and justice.

My original post makes clear that NY State as my basis of experience as indicated by my frequents use of the personal pronoun "I:" moreover I was careful to use words such as "may," when referring to others expanding my idea and real success with FOIL to their situation and locale. In subsequent responses to other posters, I have made this clearer and even capitulated one possible misreading or oversight on my part to another's more careful reading of a particular case I presented. That instance led me to reconsider one aspect of my argument and actually may help me. That's why the "dialogue" and deabate I refer to here is so vital, even beneficial to both sides.

Again, I appreciate your insightful comments regarding this forum and its attitudes and treatment of "newbies," despite that, I consider what some respondents have written to be inciteful, confrontational, and ungentlemanly.

Thank you Peter.

Peace
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  #15 (permalink)  
Old Tue Aug 23, 2005, 10:50am
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You know what would be even a greater cause to take up?

Abuse of students by their teachers.

Yup, in the grand scheme of things I'm sure most people would agree that eliminating that practise might be a little more important than worrying if maybe one official got 2 more games than another.

Of course, it is true that some NY teachers who did have that noxious little habit did end losing their teaching positions because of it. Or so I've read.

Are you for or against abuse of students by teachers, John Visentin?

Just wondering. That one is kind of a personal pet peeve of mine.
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