City of Asheville Submitted: February 3, 2023 | Updated: November 7, 2023

(February 2023) Multi-part request for City of Asheville, NC Government: Communications and revisions related to Asheville Police Department SOP 3020-Persons Experiencing Homelessness. 10/01/2021 – 01/31/2022.

Hello City of Asheville, NC Government (Records Officer),

I'd like to make a multi-part public records request for the following information under NC Public Records Law.
Ref: https://www.ncleg.net/enactedlegislation/statutes/html/bychapter/chapter_132.html

Please provide the following documents related to the changes in the Asheville Police Department's Standard Operating Procedure 3020 (SOP 3020) - Persons Experiencing Homelessness:

A. Please provide all SMS text messages and emails sent between any and all Asheville Police Department employees or liaisons, the City Manager's Office and employees, and the City Attorney's office and employees, during the specific time period of October 01, 2021 through January 31, 2022. Specifically – that mention homeless camps, camp evictions, SOP 3020, or changes made to SOP 3020 (Changed from a 7-day warning period to a 24 hour warning period).

B. Please provide all suggested revisions to SOP 3020, as well as all relevant minutes of any Boards or Committee meetings that would have to approve a change in an APD SOP (Standard Operating Procedure). During the specific time period of October 01, 2021 through January 31, 2022.

C. Please provide the digital record of exactly which version of SOP 3020 was in effect for 2021 during the time period of 10/01/2021 - 12/31/2021.

If any / all of this info is already publicly available online, please provide a link to where it can be accessed.

I am not requesting to come in person to inspect, nor to obtain printed copies of, electronic records. In accordance with NC Public Records Law, I’m requesting explicitly that all responsive records be provided via an electronic medium / format (in which the records should already exist), such as an email, file share, google drive folder, mailed flash drive if necessary, etc.

** I do not have any additional or further clarifying info to provide other than what you see in the message above. If you are unable to fulfill any or all parts of this request, please specifically cite where a reason for denial is justified under NC Public Records Law.**
——————

[Editor’s Note: This request has been sent solely from the email address [email protected] . If anyone other than that email address contacts you to pursue a similar request, it did not come from our Team. Please do not commingle or treat that as an alteration or cancellation of our request – We intend to continue to pursue our request.

Please note that we cannot commit to pay any potential fees / associated costs related to any request. If it is not possible to process the request without incurring fees, then please let us know the itemized potential cost.]

Thank you for your assistance!

Editor’s Note: Sunshine Request makes no claim as to the veracity of any statements or information contained in any of the requests, or public records, we receive.

Status: Completed

Activity:

  • November 7, 2023 11:56 am

    8 months ago

    from: City of Asheville Public Records <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: Nov 7, 2023, 11:56 AM
    subject: [External Message Added] City of Asheville public records request #23-76

     

    City of Asheville Public Records

     

    A message was sent to you regarding record request #23-76:

     

    Good morning, Sunshine Request,

    The records for this request were reviewed with an attorney, and all responsive records were provided in response to the request. Any information that is confidential under NC Public Records Law was redacted.

     

    View Request 23-76
    https://cityofashevillenc.nextrequest.com/requests/23-76


    Status: Completed
  • November 6, 2023 3:03 pm

    8 months ago

    from: Sunshine Request <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: November 6th, 2023, 3:03 PM

     

    Good afternoon Allison,

     

    I’m following up again about this this request. In particular — regarding my message to you on July 10, 2023 @ 6:33pm asking for clarification.

     

    I have not received a response to that July message, or to my follow-ups about that message, on August 10th and 21st.

     

    Broadly – I was asking for clarity on what relevant portion of the Law / NC Statutes you’re using to justify these redactions.

     

    Thank you.

     

    ~ The Sunshine Request Team



    Status: Follow up
  • August 21, 2023 2:01 pm

    10 months ago

    from: Sunshine Request <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: August 21, 2023, 2:01 PM

     

    Hi Allison,

     

    I’m following up again on my previous messages from July 10, 2023, 6:33pm and August 10, 2023, 4:14pm.

     

    I have not received a response. I’m still trying to get clarity on the following:

     

    Can you please cite specifically what relevant portion of the Law / NC Statutes you’re using to justify these redactions?

     

    Thank you.

     

    ~ The Sunshine Request Team


    Status: Follow up
  • August 10, 2023 4:14 pm

    11 months ago

    from: Sunshine Request <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: August 10, 2023, 4:14 PM

     

    Hi Allison,

     

    Following up on my previous message from July 10:

     

    July 10, 2023, 6:33pm by the requester

     

    I have not received a response. I’m just trying to get clarity on the following:

     

    Can you please cite specifically what relevant portion of the Law / NC Statutes you’re using to justify these redactions?

     

    Thank you.

     

    ~ The Sunshine Request Team


    August 10, 2023, 4:14pm by the requester


    Status: Follow up
  • July 10, 2023 6:33 pm

    1 year ago

    from: Sunshine Request <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: July 10, 2023, 6:33 PM

     

    Hi Allison,

     

    Thank you for your reply.

     

    I removed the original version of the responsive records from our website. I’ve also noted the revised version of the Google Drive folder on our site as of 07/07, and I’ve uploaded the corrected version. The request is now Public again.

     

    Your response still does not fully clarify the following questions, however:

     

    – In the Attachments folder there are 5 Event Calls documents. Three of the five files have the word “Redacted” in their Subject. Though each files has been redacted in some way, it is not clear why in 1 of those documents a caller’s human Name was being used and was redacted… while the other 2 redacted reports are showing the caller’s “Names” as being some sort of special Number / Code.

     

    What logic is there behind leaving some Names “redacted”, while others are not, and why are there “Codes” being used instead of Names? What does this mean?

     

    – Similarly — the caller’s Addresses are not redacted.

     

    We did not specifically ask that you redact any of the records in this request in any way. But, as they are CAD generated, we’re wondering why the reports have been redacted in this inconsistent manor, and who made that decision?

     

    Can you please explain the reasoning for the one caller’s actual Name being redacted, while the “Names” in the other reports, are not? Also, please cite the relevant portion of the NC Statute justifying why these records have been redacted in general, and why they’ve been redacted in the manor(s) that I’ve mentioned above.

     

    Thank you.

     

    ~ The Sunshine Request Team


    July 10, 2023, 6:33pm by the requester


    Status: Clarification Requested
  • July 7, 2023 11:02 am

    1 year ago

    from: City of Asheville Public Records <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: Jul 7, 2023, 11:02 AM
    subject: [External Message Added] City of Asheville public records request #23-76

     

    City of Asheville Public Records

     

    A message was sent to you regarding record request #23-76:

     

    Good morning, Sunshine Request Team, and thanks for reaching out.

     

    Item A:

     

    1. There were no text messages responsive to your request.
    2. I sincerely appreciate you bringing this to my attention. During legal review it was determined that the names and phone numbers of the callers on the redacted attachments are confidential, which is why they were redacted. In error, the redactions were not made at the bottom of the attachments. I have corrected this and they have been reuploaded.

     

    Item B:

    All meeting minutes and materials are already publicly available online and can be searched on the City’s website.

     

    If you have any further questions, please reply to this message or contact [email protected]. Thank you.


    July 7, 2023, 11:02am by Allison Byers, Public Records Officer (Staff)

     

    **07/07/23 Editor’s Note: Please see the updated file referenced (“23-76-20230707T164827Z-001-Updated-7723.zip”) at top left in our Documents section. This is the same file and Google Drive link from the City that we referred to in our Editor’s Notes yesterday, 07/06. However, Allison has now updated the City’s Google Drive folder as of 07/07 — and therefore, we have removed the copy that we added to our site previously. We have re-uploaded the revised copy.

     

    We have removed the original copy where the City erroneously “redacted” some of the info that was sent to us initially.


    Status: Clarification Provided
  • July 6, 2023 8:19 pm

    1 year ago

    from: Sunshine Request <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: July 06, 2023, 8:19 PM

     

    Hi Allison (or City of AVL Records Officer),

     

    Please reply promptly to the following message.

     

    We received your updates today at 10:17 / 10:18am, regarding request #23-76. Several additional points of clarification need to be provided before this request can be completed. In the meantime, we’ve temporarily “unpublished” from our website the recent info you sent, pending your response.

     

    Please re-open the request, and please ensure that if any edits / redactions/ other changes are made as a result of our email, that those updates are also made public on Next Request (so the public is aware).

     

    This request called for:

     

    A. Please provide all SMS text messages and emails sent between any and all Asheville Police Department employees or liaisons, the City Manager’s Office and employees, and the City Attorney’s office and employees, during the specific time period of October 01, 2021 through January 31, 2022. Specifically – that mention homeless camps, camp evictions, SOP 3020, or changes made to SOP 3020 (Changed from a 7-day warning period to a 24 hour warning period).

     

    B. Please provide all suggested revisions to SOP 3020, as well as all relevant minutes of any Boards or Committee meetings that would have to approve a change in an APD SOP (Standard Operating Procedure). During the specific time period of October 01, 2021 through January 31, 2022.

     

    C. Please provide the digital record of exactly which version of SOP 3020 was in effect for 2021 during the time period of 10/01/2021 – 12/31/2021.

     

    Item A.

    1. The Google Drive folder you sent contains “Emails” and their “Attachments”. No SMS Text Messages were provided. Can you please clarify if there are any text messages responsive to the request? If there are, please provide those records, and please explain why they were not provided initially.

     

    2. As a policy Sunshine Request will not process or submit records requests for public safety info specific to a single individual, address, incident, case number, or name. This includes things like police reports, calls for service, complaints / incident reports / citations, criminal / arrest type records, and camera footage. We will, on a case by case basis, fulfill public safety related requests that focus on system-level trends and data. Due to the personal nature of this type of info, we always recommend that the public reach out directly to the City for assistance with a request.

     

    Although we weren’t specifically requesting those types of records in this particular instance, it’s understandable that type of info may be responsive (as it’s an attachment in the emails provided), and that’s fine. However, we did not for you to redact anything, and therefore need to ask for clarification on each of the the following:

     

    – In the “Attachments” folder, 3 out of the 5 Event Calls documents have the word “Redacted” in their Subject. The URLs at the bottom of each report show these are CAD-generated event reports. It’s unclear why only 3 have been redacted in some way, while the remaining 2 have not.

     

    – At the top of one of the 3 “Redacted” reports, the caller’s “Name” and “Phone Number” are redacted for some reason, but their address is not. Also — at the bottom of that report the caller’s “Name”, “Address”, and “Phone” are not redacted. I don’t know the reason for this, but I’ll assume it’s a mistake and needs to be corrected in some way?

     

    – At the top of the other 2 “Redacted” event reports, the caller’s “Phone Numbers” are redacted, but their “Names” and “Addresses” are not. At the bottom of the reports, the Phone Numbers are not redacted. It’s unclear why the reports are redacted in this manor.

     

    – With all this in mind… I’d like to ask that you please clarify whether these were all mistakes, as well as the specific reason for the caller’s Name or Phone Number being redacted in the CAD reports. Please cite the relevant portion of the NC Statute justifying why these records have been redacted, and also why they’ve been redacted in the manor(s) that I’ve mentioned above.

     

    Item B.

    You provided copies of each of the “revisions to SOP 3020”. Please clarify whether there are any responsive records to the rest of Item B:

     

    “… all relevant minutes of any Boards or Committee meetings that would have to approve a change in an APD SOP (Standard Operating Procedure). During the specific time period of October 01, 2021 through January 31, 2022.”

     

    Item C.

    This has been fulfilled, thank you!

     

    ~ The Sunshine Request Team


    July 6, 2023, 8:19pm by the requester


    Status: Clarification Requested
  • July 6, 2023 10:17 am

    1 year ago

    from: City of Asheville Public Records <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: Jul 6, 2023, 10:18 AM
    subject: Your City of Asheville public records request #23-76 has been published.

     

    City of Asheville Public Records

     

    Record request #23-76 has been published and is now available for public view.

     


     

    from: City of Asheville Public Records <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: Jul 6, 2023, 10:18 AM
    subject: Your City of Asheville public records request #23-76 has been closed.

     

    City of Asheville Public Records

     

    Record request #23-76 has been closed. The closure reason supplied was:

     

    The records responsive to your request are available here.

     

    All records responsive to your request have been released in accordance with the North Carolina Public Records Act. Your request has been fulfilled and is now closed. Please reply to this message or contact [email protected] if you have any questions.

     

    View Request 23-76

    https://cityofashevillenc.nextrequest.com/requests/23-76

     

    **Editor’s Note: Please see the 1 file Allison sent (“23-76-20230706T183654Z-001.zip”) at top left in our Documents section. It can also be viewed via the City’s Google Drive Folder that Allison linked to, found here: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1MBug3jpy8sGyd5H2b0Xtdc8T-DEZcdzQ


     

    from: City of Asheville Public Records <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: Jul 6, 2023, 10:17 AM
    subject: [Document Released] City of Asheville public records request #23-76

     

    City of Asheville Public Records

     

    A document has been released for record request #23-76 along with the following message:

     

    This is the record responsive to part C of your request.

    Homeless Persons SOP (4-18-2014).pdf

     

    View Request 23-76

    https://cityofashevillenc.nextrequest.com/requests/23-76

     

    Document links are valid for one month. After August 6, you will need to sign in to view the document(s).

     

    **Editor’s Note: Please see the 1 file referenced (“Homeless Persons SOP (4-18-2014).pdf”) at top left in our Documents section.


    Status: Response Received from Government
  • June 27, 2023 10:36 am

    1 year ago

    **06/27/23 Editor’s Note: This records request is now #3 on the City’s “Communications Search Queue”. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • June 13, 2023 10:57 am

    1 year ago

    **06/13/23 Editor’s Note: This records request is now #4 on the City’s “Communications Search Queue”. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • May 30, 2023 12:36 pm

    1 year ago

    **05/30/23 Editor’s Note: This records request is now #10 on the City’s “Communications Search Queue”. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • May 15, 2023 11:13 am

    1 year ago

    **05/15/23 Editor’s Note: This records request is now #11 on the City’s “Communications Search Queue”. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • April 28, 2023 12:46 pm

    1 year ago

    **04/28/23 Editor’s Note: On 04/04/23 we received the following from Allison in response to one of our records requests:

     

    “From now on, all requests for communications – including emails, text messages, Google Chat messages, voicemails, etc. – will be processed in the order received.”  … ”you can check the position of your request at any time using the City of Asheville Communications Search Queue (formerly the City of Asheville Email Search Queue). I appreciate your understanding as I work to fulfill public records requests equitably and as promptly as possible. Thank you!”

     

    Our records request above is now #16 on the City’s “Communications Search Queue”.

     

    Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • April 6, 2023 2:13 pm

    1 year ago

    **04/06/23 Editor’s Note: On 04/04/23 we received the following from Allison in response to one of our records requests:

     

    “From now on, all requests for communications – including emails, text messages, Google Chat messages, voicemails, etc. – will be processed in the order received.”  … ”you can check the position of your request at any time using the City of Asheville Communications Search Queue (formerly the City of Asheville Email Search Queue). I appreciate your understanding as I work to fulfill public records requests equitably and as promptly as possible. Thank you!”

     

    Our records request above is now #17 on the City’s “Communications Search Queue”.

     

    Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • April 5, 2023 12:14 pm

    1 year ago

    **4/5/23 Editor’s Note: This request is now #17 on the City’s email queue spreadsheet. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • April 3, 2023 12:55 pm

    1 year ago

    **4/3/23 Editor’s Note: This request is now #18 on the City’s email queue spreadsheet.. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • March 27, 2023 2:48 pm

    1 year ago

    from: City of Asheville Public Records <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: Mar 27, 2023, 2:48 PM
    subject: [External Message Added] City of Asheville public records request #23-76

     

    City of Asheville Public Records

     

    A message was sent to you regarding record request #23-76:

     

    Hi Sunshine Request, thanks for reaching out. As I am the only person that conducts email searches and initial reviews, sometimes my additional obligations as the public records officer, time off, or other circumstances can cause the email search queue to halt or move more slowly. However, please know that I am always working on fulfilling requests as promptly and efficiently as possible. You should start seeing the queue move again in the next week or so. I appreciate your patience and understanding. If you have any other questions, please reply to this message or contact [email protected]. Thank you!

     


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • March 24, 2023 6:49 pm

    1 year ago

    from: Sunshine Request <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: Mar 24, 2023, 6:49 PM
    subject: Re: [External Message Added] City of Asheville public records request #23-76

     

    Hi Allison or NR Officer,

     

    I’m following up regarding [NextRequest #23-76]. I understand that this might be a large request and could take some time to fulfill. However, I’ve noticed it has stopped moving and hasn’t changed position (#19) on the City’s email queue spreadsheet for at least 22 days.

     

    Can you please provide a status update or reason for the delay – or the anticipated timeline for its completion?

     

    I’ll follow up again early next month, if I don’t hear anything else before then.

     

    Thank you for your help!

     

    ~ The Sunshine Request Team


    Status: Follow up
  • March 2, 2023 3:29 pm

    1 year ago

    **3/2/23 Editor’s Note: This request is now #19 on the City’s email queue spreadsheet.. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • February 22, 2023 2:52 pm

    1 year ago

    **2/22/23 Editor’s Note: This request is now #20 on the City’s email queue spreadsheet. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • February 15, 2023 4:45 pm

    1 year ago

    **2/15/23 Editor’s Note: This request is now #22 on the City’s email queue spreadsheet. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • February 7, 2023 3:52 pm

    1 year ago

    from: City of Asheville Public Records <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: Feb 6, 2023, 3:52 PM
    subject: [External Message Added] City of Asheville public records request #23-76

     

    A message was sent to you regarding record request #23-76:

     

    Your public records request has been received by the City of Asheville and has been assigned to the appropriate person(s) for processing. Once processing is complete, you will receive any responsive records.

     

    Requests for email are processed in the order they are received. Your request is number 26 in the email queue; you can view the queue document at any time to see the position of your request. Once the emails are collected and reviewed, you will be sent any responsive records.

     

    Please reply to this message or contact [email protected] if you have any questions.

     

    View Request 23-76


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • February 7, 2023 2:24 pm

    1 year ago

    from: City of Asheville Public Records <[email protected]>
    to: [email protected]
    date: Feb 6, 2023, 2:24 PM
    subject: Your City of Asheville public records request #23-76 has been opened.

     

    Your record request #23-76 has been submitted. It is currently under review and is not available for the general public to view.

     

    The due date for your request may be later than usual because the office is closed on:

     

    – February 20: Presidents’ Day

     

    View Request 23-76


    Status: Government Processing Request
  • February 6, 2023 2:25 pm

    1 year ago

    **Editor’s Note: This request was sent in via Asheville City Government’s public records request portal. As we receive updates, we will post them here on our website. Thank you for using Sunshine Request!

     

    Hello City of Asheville (Records Officer),

     

    I’d like to make a public records request for information that may be available in your office.

     

    If you’re not the appropriate party to contact about the request, please provide the correct name and email address of whom I should send it to.

     

    Please confirm receipt to let me know the request will begin processing, and if possible, please provide a rough estimate of when the request may be completed. I will plan on following up again around the end of the month if I have not heard back before then.

     

    Here are the details of the request:

     

    Subject: (February 2023) Multi-part request for City of Asheville, NC Government: Communications and revisions related to Asheville Police Department SOP 3020-Persons Experiencing Homelessness. 10/01/2021 – 01/31/2022.

     

    Message: “Hello City of Asheville, NC Government (Records Officer),

     

    I’d like to make a multi-part public records request for the following information under NC Public Records Law.

     

    Ref: https://www.ncleg.net/enactedlegislation/statutes/html/bychapter/chapter_132.html

     

    Please provide the following documents related to the changes in the Asheville Police Department’s Standard Operating Procedure 3020 (SOP 3020) – Persons Experiencing Homelessness:

     

    A. Please provide all SMS text messages and emails sent between any and all Asheville Police Department employees or liaisons, the City Manager’s Office and employees, and the City Attorney’s office and employees, during the specific time period of October 01, 2021 through January 31, 2022. Specifically – that mention homeless camps, camp evictions, SOP 3020, or changes made to SOP 3020 (Changed from a 7-day warning period to a 24 hour warning period).

     

    B. Please provide all suggested revisions to SOP 3020, as well as all relevant minutes of any Boards or Committee meetings that would have to approve a change in an APD SOP (Standard Operating Procedure). During the specific time period of October 01, 2021 through January 31, 2022.

     

    C. Please provide the digital record of exactly which version of SOP 3020 was in effect for 2021 during the time period of 10/01/2021 – 12/31/2021.

     

    If any / all of this info is already publicly available online, please provide a link to where it can be accessed.

     

    I am not requesting to come in person to inspect, nor to obtain printed copies of, electronic records. In accordance with NC Public Records Law, I’m requesting explicitly that all responsive records be provided via an electronic medium / format (in which the records should already exist), such as an email, file share, google drive folder, mailed flash drive if necessary, etc.

     

    ** I do not have any additional or further clarifying info to provide other than what you see in the message above. If you are unable to fulfill any or all parts of this request, please specifically cite where a reason for denial is justified under NC Public Records Law.**

    ——————

     

    [Editor’s Note: This request has been sent solely from the email address [email protected] . If anyone other than that email address contacts you to pursue a similar request, it did not come from our Team. Please do not commingle or treat that as an alteration or cancellation of our request – We intend to continue to pursue our request.

     

    Please note that we cannot commit to pay any potential fees / associated costs related to any request. If it is not possible to process the request without incurring fees, then please let us know the itemized potential cost.]

     

    Thank you for your assistance!”

     

    Thank you!

     

    ** Sunshine Request (www.sunshinerequest.com) makes no claim as to the veracity of any statements or information contained in any of the requests, or public records, we receive.


    Status: Sent to Government
  • February 3, 2023 6:24 pm

    1 year ago

    Submitted to Sunshine Request
    Status: Pending