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PR 17-17 Harris v. City of Providence No Violation

The Complainant alleged the City violated the APRA when it withheld unfiled deposition transcripts. The City claimed it purchased the transcripts from a third party court reporter and, as such, considered them to be 'trade secrets and commercial or financial information obtained from a person, firm, or corporation which is of a privileged or confidential nature.' See R.I. Gen. Laws 38-2-2(4)(B)." We concluded that unfiled deposition transcripts in a civil case are not public records under the APRA based on Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 30(f)(3), (4) and R.I. Superior Court Rule of Civil Procedure 30(f)(2), which govern depositions in civil cases, and on the ruling in Critical Mass Energy Project v. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 975 F.2d 871 (D.C. Cir. 1992), which was approved in The Providence Journal Company v. Convention Center Authority, 774 A.2d 40 (R.I. 2011).

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