Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

In re Castorina

Supreme Court, Richmond County

April 3, 2017

In the Matter of Ronald Castorina, JR. and NICOLE MALLIOTAKIS, Petitioners,
v.
Bill De Blasio, in his official capacity as Mayor of the City of New York, THE OFFICE OF THE MAYOR OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, MELISSA MARK-VIVERITO, in her official capacity as the Speaker of the New York City Council, STEVEN BANKS, Commissioner of the New York City Human Resources Administration/Department of Social Services, in his official capacity, MATTHEW BRUNE, Chief Operating Officer of the New York City Human Resources Administration/Department of Social Services, in his official capacity, and RICARDO BROWN, Executive Deputy Commissioner, Management Information Systems, New York City Human Resources Administration/Department of Social Services, in his official capacity, Respondents.

          DECISION

          HONORABLE PHILIP G. MINARDO, J.S.C

         The following papers were marked fully submitted on February 1, 2017:

         Papers Numbered

         Petitioners' Order to Show Cause with Temporary Restraining Order And Verified Petition Dated December 5, 2016 With Exhibits ......1

         Affirmation of Jeffrey Alfano Dated December 5, 2016 With Exhibits ............2

         Petitioners' Memorandum of Law in Support of Petitioners'/Plaintiffs' Order to Show Cause Dated December 5, 2016 ..........3

         Affidavit of Nicole Malliotakis Dated December 5, 2016 With Exhibits ..............4

         Affidavit of Ronald Castorina, Jr. Dated December 5, 2016 With Exhibits ..........5

         Respondents' Verified Answer Dated December 16, 2016 With Exhibits ...........6

         Respondents' Memorandum of Law in Support of Verified Answer Dated December 16, 2016 ........7

         Affirmation of Martha Calhoun in support of the verified answer Dated December 16, 2016 ...........8

         Affidavit of Collette Samman in support of the verified answer Dated December 16, 2016 ..........9

         Affidavit of John L. Burnett Dated December 16, 2016 .........10

         Petitioners' Post Hearing Memorandum in Further Support Dated February 1, 2017 With Exhibits .........11

         Affirmation of Jeffrey Alfano. Dated February 1, 2017 With Exhibits .........12

         Respondents' Post Hearing Memorandum of Law in Opposition to The Petition Dated February 1, 2017 .........13

         Affirmation of Aaron Bloom in Support of Respondents Answer Dated February 1, 2017 With Exhibits .........14

         Transcript of Proceedings Before the Honorable Philip G Minardo Beginning January 5, 2017 And Concluding January 18, 2017 ..........15

         On November 19, 1863, in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, President Abraham Lincoln declared:

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate - we can not consecrate - we can not hallow - this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us - that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion - that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain - that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom - and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

         President Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address, Bliss Copy, Library of Congress

         Commanding words from a President who envisioned the rebirth of the democracy that laid splintered before him. President Lincoln nobly proclaimed that few would note his words that day, yet it would not be forgotten what the men who battled the Civil War had achieved.

         Counsel for petitioner attempted to link the requests before this Court to President Lincoln's bold proclamation of self-government. This Court does not agree with the reference.

         The issues before this Court are narrow and identifiable, and do not threaten the stability of the Union as a whole, as may have been argued. Essentially, this Court must determine: (1) whether the petitioners have standing to request a declaratory judgment and writ of prohibition regarding certain application materials retained by the respondents in connection with New York City Identity Card program (the "IDNYC" program); (2) whether the Public Officers Law Article 6, §§84-90, otherwise known as New York State's FOIL law, allows disclosure of certain personally identifying information when held by a government agency in New York State; and (3) whether the respondents have preempted the Public Officers Law Article 6, §§84-90, the New York City Charter §1133, or the Arts and Cultural Affair Law §57.13, when deciding to destroy retained IDNYC materials, and no longer retain future underlying application materials.

         BACKGROUND

         1. Procedural History

         On December 5, 2016, petitioners Ronald Castorina, Jr. and Nicole Malliotakis filed this Article 78 proceeding by Order to Show Cause with request for a Temporary Restraining Order. Petitioners are members of the New York State Assembly bringing this Article 78 proceeding under the New York Public Officers Law §§ 84-90, the Freedom of Information Law or FOIL, and the Civil Practice Law and Rules § 3001, in their personal and professional capacities.

         Fundamentally, petitioners claim that respondents' destruction of application materials connected with the IDNYC program, enabled under New York City Administrative Code §3-115(e) is in contravention of the New York State FOIL law and such action exceeds respondents' jurisdiction as public officers.

         Unsurprisingly, petitioners' first cause of action seeks a prohibition under CPLR § 7803(2) restricting respondents from exceeding their jurisdiction and destroying the application materials collected for the IDNYC program in response to a federal election.

         Petitioners' second cause of action seeks a declaratory judgment action that 68 RCNY 6-11 and NYC Admin Code §3-115(e) violate the purpose of FOIL in granting transparency to government programs, and therefore, enforcement of those sections in contravention of FOIL should be denied.

         On December 5, 2016, at the request of petitioner with good cause shown, this court issued a Temporary Restraining Order which provided that pending the return date of the motion, respondents were enjoined and precluded from the destruction of any and all application materials associated with the IDNYC program.

         Respondents then appealed that order to the Appellate Division, Second Department. The Appellate Division, Second Department granted the application to the extent that the return date was advanced to December 21, 2016.

         Respondent City of New York filed an answer on or about December 16, 2016 denying each allegation and stating the following defenses:

Petitioners fail to state a claim upon which relief can be granted;
The provisions of the IDNYC Law concerning the disposition of records does not violate or otherwise conflict with FOIL;
Respondents have fully complied with their statutory obligations;
The records subject to this proceeding are exempt from disclosure under New York Public Officers Law §87(2)(b) because disclosure of such records would constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy;
The records that are subject to this proceeding are exempted from disclosure pursuant to New York Public Officers Law §87(2)(b)(iv) because they contain "information of a personal nature when disclosure would result in economic or personal hardship of the subject party and such information is not relevant to the work of the agency requesting or maintaining it;"
The records that are subject to this proceeding are exempted from disclosure pursuant to New York Public Officers Law §87(2)(b)(v) because they contain "information of a personal nature reported in confidence and not relevant to the work of the agency requesting or maintaining it;"
The records that are subject to this proceeding are exempted from disclosure pursuant to New York Public Officers Law §87(2)(f) because disclosure could endanger the life or safety of numerous individuals; and
The records that are subject to this proceeding are exempted from disclosure pursuant to federal and/or state law.

         Petitioners also filed a second Order to Show Cause and request for temporary restraining order on December 20, 2016, requesting leave to amend and supplement the verified petition dated December 5, 2016. Such order to show cause was declined at that time by this court.

         On December 21, 2016, this Court held a hearing with regard to the December 5, 2016 Order to Show Cause. After argument, this Court determined that a hearing on the issues was necessary pursuant to CPLR 7804(h). Ignizio v, City of New York, 29 Misc.3d 1231 (Sup. Ct. Richmond, 2010), judgment reversed on separate issue, 85 A.D.3d 1171 (2nd Dept. 2011).

         On January 5, 2017, a hearing on the issues was held and the City of New York presented Nisha Agarwal, the Commissioner of Immigrant Affairs in the City of New York, Steven Banks, the Commissioner of the New York City Human Resources Administration and the Department of Social Services, the IDNYC program administering agency, and John Miller, the Deputy Commissioner for Intelligence and Counterterrorism of the New York City Police Department. Petitioners themselves also testified.

         The matter was then adjourned until January 18, 2017, when petitioners presented John Burnett, as an expert in financial services, and Sergeant Edward Mullins, the president of the New York City Police Department Sergeants' Benevolent Association, on the issue of security and policing.

         The parties were granted permission to submit post-hearing memorandum by February 1, 2017, and the matter ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.