Fort Smith Chapter of TIGG
Joey McCutchen

Contact: Joey McCutchen
McCutchen Law Firm

The list of FOIA cases filed includes the following:

• Oct 10, 2021: Judge rules that flag display is historic monumentCourt files order against city in suit about display

• July 28, 2021: Lawsuit filed against Huntsville School Board for FOIA violation regarding alleged sexual assault: Madison County Record (July 28) • KNWA (Video)Democrat-Gazette Madison County Record (August 4) • A messy fight Democrat-Gazette (Aug 28) • Lawsuit answered (Madison County Record, Sept 1, 2021) • Parent calls for more transparency (4029 News) • Lawyer: filings violate privacyDistrict responds to lawsuit

• June 25, 2021: Complaint filed against Fayetteville schools • Interview with Joey McCutchen (Conduit News) • Interview: Recusals Delay FOIA Suit (Conduit News) • Mike Masterson: A judge, finally Democrat GazetteRecusalsCourt Order Press Release Secure Arkansas •   Fayetteville to pay attorney fees (September 9) • Fayetteville rulingFOIA victory (Arkansas DG,  Sept 14) • Court order to pay attorney fees

• June 3, 2021:  Consent decree, financial transparency discussed at Fort Smith Board strategy session - TB&PNWAonline

• June 17, 2021:  ROBERT STEINBUCH AND JOEY MCCUTCHEN: Protect FOIA - opinion piece in the Democrat Gazette

• June 11, 2021:  McCutchen v. City of Fort Smith: Fort Smith violated Freedom of Information Act in not revealing emails, judge rules . . . read more: SW TimesDemocrat GazetteTB&PKFSM 5NewsCourt Order

• McCutchen v. City of Fort Smith – dealt with secret serial meetings by the City Administrator with members of the City Board of Directors.  (Finding no FOIA violation but upholding FOIA’s use of the term ‘meeting’ based on established precedent.  The Circuit Court had held FOIA to be unconstitutionally vague.)

• June Bradshaw v. Fort Smith Public Schools – dealt with an unlawful meeting (without public notice) and a meeting by email announcing votes or support for School Board officers.  (Summary judgment granted in favor of the Plaintiff finding a violation of FOIA)

• Bruce Wade v. City of Fort Smith – deals with unlawful meetings by email discussing abolishing the City’s Civil Service Commission and another unlawful email meeting discussing a settlement offer in the case.  (Summary judgment granted in favor of the Plaintiff finding a violation of FOIA, currently on appeal to the Arkansas Supreme Court)

• Larry Austin v. City of Mansfield – dealt with unlawful meeting by text messages discussing ousting the Mayor.  (2018 case.  Agreed Order finding a FOIA violation)

• Bob Gregory v. Jim Baker, in his capacity as Faulkner County Judge – dealt with an open record request following the County Judge emailing several persons about some federal legislation and asking for others to get voters out.  (2018 case.  Agreed Order finding a FOIA violation)

• Jim Parsons v. Ecclesia, Inc. d/b/a Ecclesia College – deals with an open records request and illegal exaction claims.  (Currently in litigation)

• Steve Whiteaker v. City of Ozark – deals with open records and an unlawful meeting held by text messaging dealing with a desired special audit of the City of Ozark.  (2018 case.  Currently in litigation)

• Washington County Soil & Conservation District v. Arkansas Association of Conservation Districts – deals with an open record request regarding allocation of funds received from sales of conservation license plates.  (2019 Case.  Agreed Order finding a FOIA violation and precluding further violations)

• Bill Ray Lewis v. North Arkansas Regional Medical Center – deals with an open records request primarily for documents regarding receipt and use of grant monies.  (2019 case.  Currently in litigation)