Man sues Kanawha assessor for denied FOIA requests

CHARLESTON -- A man is suing Kanawha County Assessor Phyllis Gatson for failing to comply with a Freedom of Information Act request he made. On Feb. 22, David L. McKain made a Freedom of Information Act request to the defendant for residential review document data reports, according to a complaint filed May 17 in Kanawha Circuit Court. McKain claims the FOIA request asked that the data be delivered in electronic format and that the information was public record. In her response to McKain's request, Gatson denied the request in part, stating that the information requested was exempt from disclosure, according to the suit. McKain claims Gatson's request denial also stated that West Virginia code required her office to maintain strict confidentiality of information concerning data collected during appraisal of property in the county. The records requested are composed of data collected by the defendant during her official duties to maintain appraisals of property in Kanawha County and are not concerning personal information, according to the suit. McKain is seeking for the court to direct the defendant to provide him with the requested information. He is representing himself. The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Charles E. King. Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 12-C-913

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