Neronha files lawsuit against
West Warwick for APRA violation

PROVIDENCE – R.I. Attorney General Peter F. Neronha has filed a lawsuit against the town of West Warwick alleging the town committed a “willful and knowing, or alternatively reckless violation” of the Rhode Island Access to Public Records Act, Neronha announced Tuesday.

Neronha filed the lawsuit on behalf of Eric Wilson, who filed an APRA request in February 2018.

According to court documents, Wilson sought records pertaining to the “flow capital cost, operating costs and the amount due Coventry per year since 1983, as outlined in the 1983 inter municipal agreement between West Warwick and Coventry regarding sewers.”

The attorney general alleges the town failed to respond in a timely manner and alleged that even following a prompt from the attorney general’s office, the town still failed to provide a response in a timely manner. The lawsuit also alleges the town attempted to require Wilson to sign a release and withdraw his APRA complaint with the attorney general’s office before providing him documents.

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Neronha alleges the town engaged in obstructive behavior intended to violate APRA and alleged the town still had not provided all responsive documents related to the request.

The lawsuit seeks to have the court declare the town in violation with APRA, provide the requested documents at no cost, assess penalties against the town and award further relief as deemed fit by the court.

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