Mayor Daley, New York is re-examining their building codes as a resultof the 9/11 experience. This article focuses on stored diesel fuel as contributing to the loss of a building adjacent to the World Trade Center buildings. After our Jefferson Park electrical station caused darkened downtown buildings several years ago, Chicago adopted requirements for back-up diesel generators. Now ONLY the "evacuation lighting" will use the back-up power, and we may be the only city in the world that has "altered" (Chicago's own internal comparison word) the International Electrical Code to require a generator - that the world considers the wrong back-up power source. The world considers it very risky for an entire building to be at the mercy of a dead starting battery or a single broken wire insteadof the traditional more reliable multiple back-up sources using recharagable nearby batteries. Before we have a disaster in our city, please have your staff review the reasonableness of single generators and series wiring in high-rise buildings over 300 feet. Many buildings in Chicago are now racing to meet the January 1, 2003 deadline and are wasting millions of dollars on the wrong solution of a single generator. We have been trying to get anyone in the city to listen since our May 30, 2002 Illinois Freedom of Information request. We have received a few documents from Jennifer Hoyle, but the crucial exemption documents are still missing.
Jennifer Hoyle, I sent this article to Mayor Daley earlier today and mentioned the exemption documents that I am still waiting to review, in particular, the 2 or 3 commercial buildings that were granted waivers to the generator requirement. I also find it very hard to understand how there is reportedly no written documentation on the reasoning why a single generator is a more reliable back-up power source for evacuation lighting. I think the reason may be that there is no logical explanation that leads to that conclusion, which apparently is out of step with the rest of the WORLD. I believe it is your job as the frequent spokesperson for the Mayor to anticipate potentially embarrasing situations. If there is one fire in the service elevator area of a lower floor and hundreds of persons die by failing to evacuate in completely dark hallways and stairwells because a single generator failed to start or a single wire was damaged in the explosion or fire, our series of alerts that have been essentially ignored by the city will be an unexplainable problem for the city. The financial liability and political fall-out can be avoided if the Mayor exercises the leadership to direct the Electrical Commission and the Building Department to review and reconsider the reasonableness of the "altered" generator mandate. If the subcommittee of contractors that susposedly recommended the "alteration" of the International Electrical Code, are in a position to make millions in profit selling and installing those generators, the obvivous conflict-of-interest legal questions will arise. Please acknowledge the receipt of this email. It is too important to be misplaced in the email system. I am warning of these potential problems because I admire the leadership that the Mayor gives to Chicago, and that is real loyality and support. If the people that work for him are giving him what they think he wants and not the best recommendation, that is not honest, loyal, or effective support. Thank you, Richard Ward Reference: http://neweastside.org
It is now just a week from the January 1, 2003 deadline that buildings over 300 feet must have taken positive steps to install a single diesel generator as a back-up power source for emegency evacuation lighting. The City of Chicago has avoided furnishing any written justification for this building code amendment that is contrary to the National Electrical Code. Our Illinois Freedom of Information requests have been incompletely answered and important exemption documents are missing.
Our building managers are wasting many millions of dollars for the wrong solution to the life saving need to provide back-up power sources for evacuation lighting.
Please provide an update on your efforts to get the Building Department to respond to our 7-month-old Freedom of Information request that legally should have been answered in 7 working days.
From : "JENNIFER HOYLE" <LW00249@cityofchicago.org>
To : <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject : Re: STATUS OF EFFORTS WITH BLDG. DEPT.
Date : Tue, 24 Dec 2002 10:08:05 -0600
Attachments : arendt.wpd (5k)
Dear Mr. Ward: I am responding to the e-mail you sent regarding your Freedom of Information Act request. You stated that the response was incompleteand that you are still waiting for documents.
It is true that we were not able to provide you with all of the documents you requested, but we were not able to provide you with those documents because the Building Department did not have them. I realize that this is not satisfactory, but this is not an issue that can be addressed under the Freedom of Information Act. The Freedom of Information Act does not require any public body to maintain or prepare a new record specifically to respond to a request.
In regard to your request for documents pertaining to waivers or exemptions regarding the generator requirement, at the time your FOIA request was submitted, at the time we responded to your request, and as recently as November 18, 2002--the last time I checked--no waivers or exemptions had been granted by the Department of Buildings. I am construing your e-mail as a new Freedom of Information request for documents pertaining to any exemptions or waivers that have been granted since we responded to your earlier request, and will forward this request to the Department of Buildings.
The only item that was denied based on an exemption in FOIA was your request for relevant sections of the National Electric Code, which was denied pursuant to 5 ILCS 140/7 (1)(a). The National Electric Code is a copyrighted document, and unauthorized reproduction of copyrighted material may constitute a violation of federal and state law. It is not clear to me whether you intended your e-mail to be an appeal of that denial; however, because your e-mail did not cite any legal authority or case law that would allow us to reproduce this material, I have no choice but to uphold the previous denial.
In response to your contention that the City has avoided furnishing any written justification for this building code amendment that is contrary to the National Electrical Code, I would respond by stating that I have forwarded to you all documents that were responsive to your Freedom of Information request, with the exception of the sections of the National Electric Code. It is reasonable for you to ask why there are no additional documents regarding these matters, but that is a question that should be directed to and addressed by the Building Department.
My role in this process is to assist City departments in coordinating responses to Freedom of Information requests. To the extent that any person submitting a Freedom of Information request has questions or concerns regarding the policy decisions of a department, I must refer those questions to that department. It is clear that you disagree with the Building Department's policy decisions on this matter; however, I do not have the technical expertise or background knowledge about this matter to address your concerns or respond to your questions. The Building Department forwarded me the attached letter--I'm not sure if it was sent to you--responding to your questions. If you have any additional questions or concerns regarding this issue--outside of a Freedom of Information request for documents--I would urge you to contact the Department of Buildings.
arendt.wpd (Word Perfect Document) email attachment converted to text
May 29, 2002
Richard F. Ward
155 Harbor Drive #5101
Chicago, IL 60601
Subject: Letter Dated April 23, 2002
Dear Mr. Ward, I apologize for the delay in responding to your thoughtful letter. We appreciate your experience in the airline industry as it relates to emergency evacuation of airplanes. There are some similarities between emergency egress from buildings and from aircraft during disasters.
The most common need for emergency and egress illumination in buildings occurs during utility outages and during fires. The present Code addresses these more common occurrences for the various sizes and occupancy classes of buildings. Generators, battery inverters and unit battery equipment all play a roll in providing required egress illumination and exit directional signage.
Emergency Unit Battery Equipment is listed to UL 924 the standard for Emergency Lighting Equipment. In order to pass this test the unit equipment must keep a minimum lamp illumination level for 1.5 hours. Most buildings requiring emergency illumination in Chicago are allowed to have this unit equipment fulfill this requirement. High-rise buildings, with some exceptions, have a requirement for a 4 hour non-utility backup source. High-rise buildings in Chicago are constructed in a compartmentalized manner as a fire prevention and fire fighting means. Very often, during a compartmentalized fire, occupants are receiving voice instructions from the Fire Department to stay within their locations. Our experience shows that the 1.5 hour backup capacity is insufficient for most high-rise fires and utility outages. Another issue with unit equipment is the increased sustained level of maintenance required to keep the equipment functional over a long period of time. Buildings, unfortunately do not have the constant, high level of maintenance that would be required for commercial airliners. There are maintenance requirements in the Code, but compliance is difficult to enforce.
High-rise emergency system components such as source equipment, feeders and branch circuits are designed to have higher reliability due to UL listing requirements, fire resistive route for conductors and separation from other electrical systems. Our experience with these systems in hospitals, high-rise buildings and similar locations has led directly to present day requirements.
Thank you once again for sharing your experience and concerns.
Email To: Jennifer Hoyle, Chicago Department of Law
Copy To: Mayor Daley and Alderman Natarus
Thank you for your email response on December 24th and for the attachment of the letter dated May 29, 2002 from Mr. Arendt of the Building Department that was apparently never sent. The Building Department was aware that nothing had been received by me through numerous phone messages and written communications on July 9, 2002 and August 4, 2002. There should have been no confusion that the May 29, 2002 draft was not received by me. The May 29th draft was also apparently not shared with the Law Department either or it would have been included in your Freedom of Information response that was dated October 2, 2002 and picked-up by me on October 30th from your office.
Now that I have had an opportunity to review the May 29th draft that I received on December 24th, I believe it was apparently never mailed because it is generally unresponsive my April 15th email to Alderman Natarus (with a copy to Mayor Daley) that may have been forwarded to the Building Department. And it is also generally unresponsive to my April 23rd letter directly to the Building Department. 1.) Chicago's argument that: "Our experience shows that the 1.5 hour backup capacity is insufficient for most high-rise fires and utility outages" is not correct, in my opinion, for high-rise fires and is only applicable to Edison utility outages. Regarding the "experience" of the city, please furnish under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act any records of the Chicago Fire Department regarding high-rise fires where primary evacuation lighting power was unavailable and 90 minutes was insufficient to decide to evacuate the building? 2.) The argument that a single UL approved generator is more reliable than 150 independent UL approved battery packs is again incorrect in my opinion, considering the redundancy of the multiple battery packs. Even if 10% of the battery packs were exhausted after a few minutes, the remaining 90% would be a safer environment than a totally black stairwell resulting from a single broken wire or from a single generator starting battery. And that is true for a 7-story building as well as a 70-story building. 3.) Also the argument that "compliance is difficult to enforce" for the 6-month requirement to test the battery packs is not valid, in my opinion, because the same inspector that checks for fire extinguisher testing can also confirm that the batteries have been tested. 4.) Regarding the statement: "...higher reliability due to... fire resistive routes for conductors and separation from other electrical systems" may not be valid after our 9/11 experience because an explosion could sever the wiring in the restrictive and limited new paths that are currently being approved.
Only local batteries can prevent a totally black evacuation route and save the lives of our citizens. We must focus on the single word "altered" in Chicago's comparison to the National Electrical Code: "Consistent with NEC format, but is altered to provide specific emergency generator requirements" (emphasis added) Buildings like the old Prudential tower have voluntarily added battery back-up for their evacuation lighting for the safety of their occupants. When will Chicago amend their code to conform to minimum national and international standards for evacuation lighting back-up power?
For a problem that may have been highlighted by the poor public relations of a darkened downtown area several years ago, when the Edison Jefferson Park Station had problems, the generator solution for evacuation lighting is not the answer that conforms to national and international experience. In many buildings it is too late to reverse the new generator requirement, but the batteries are still needed for the safety of our citizens for all evacuation routes, regardless of height or length. Each step of an evacuation in a darkened and smoky hallway and stairwell is a life-safety problem.
The May 29th draft reveals that: "High-rise buildings, with some exceptions, have a requirement for a 4 hour non-utility backup source." (emphasis added) Therefore, the Law Department's October 2nd IFOIA response and the December 24th follow-up email are apparently both not accurate regarding the lack of "exceptions", or more specifically "waivers or exemptions." In my IFOIA letter of May 30th, I requested under #6 "Copies of approved exceptions". If I used an unclear or confusing word such as "exceptions", there should have been an attempt by the City to request a clarification of my request for information.
After several requests, I have been unable to obtain the email address of your Chief Electrical Inspector, Mr. Arendt, so please forward this email to the Building Department and/or the Fire Department for their possible reply to issues where they have the technical knowledge. Because many buildings and organizations are being affected by the apparently unique Chicago generator code requirement (that differs from the National Electrical Code), this series of communications on this issue are being made available on the website page: http://NewEastsideForum.homestead.com/EvacuationLighting.html
Jennifer, you have been the most helpful person in our efforts to gain an understanding of the reasoning for the nearly half-million dollar expenditure in most buildings. I very much appreciate your efforts, and fully understand that you are responsible only for the legal requirements under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act.
I live on the 51st floor of my residential high-rise building and am trying to personally insure that evacuation lighting will be available for my family and neighbors if a fire or explosion eliminates the primary and secondary utility source AND if the new single generator does not start or there is a single break in the long wiring. I have a much lower concern for the simple inconvenience of both a temporary primary and secondary utility outage. The memories of the long-time residents can recall only one short utility outage since our building was built in 1974.
Thank you for your help. Hopefully you are having a joyous Holiday Season and the citizens of our great city will experience a peaceful New Year.
Chicago Contractors and Inspectors have determined that a single large expensive diesel generator is the safest and most reliable source for Emergency Evacuation Lighting in buildings over 300 feet in height. They arrived at this conclusion by starting with a discussion of back-up power for ELEVATORS, FIRE PUMPS, AND EVACUATION LIGHTING. The first two needed a generator because of high starting loads. Even though local recharagable batteries have historically and universally been determined to be the most reliable multiple back-up source of power, these contractors decided to just add the emergency evacuation lighting to the diesel generator back-up source that was REQUIRED FOR THE HIGH START-UP LOADS OF THE ELEVATORS AND FIRE PUMPS. Then when input from the Chicago Fire Department determined that neither fire pumps nor elevators required an electrical back-up power source, the contractors ,acting as an advisory panel to the city, did not re-visit the expensive diesel generator requirement that was NO LONGER REQUIRED. Apparently the legislation had already been written, and was passed by the City Council.
The deisel generator contractors and consultants have been in high demand to satisfy the January 1, 2003 deadline.
Efforts by a few individuals advising the administrator of this website were initially ignored by the City of Chicago not responding to an Illinois Freedom of Information Request within the legally required seven working days.
Thousands of persons remain at risk of not being able to safely evacuate from any smoke filled hallway or stairwell in the City of Chicago, if the normal electrical power for evacuation lighting is disrupted.
To examine the reasoning and the efforts that are being made, please continue to read the followng communications:
April 15, 2002...to Alderman Natarus and Mayor Daley
Alderman Natarus, we need your help again to investigate which is more reliable for emergency lighting in ANY residential hallway or stairway where there are no windows. Several representatives of the Chicago electrical industry pooled their experience and determined that buildings over 300 feet must have a diesel generator for emergency lighting. Unfortunately their experience did not include the aircraft industry, which has always used batteries as a power source back-up for emergency lighting.
I believe what happened during their discussions was a focus on the need for a "high starting load" back-up power source for elevators and fire pumps, and they just added the emergency lighting to make the generator purchase more cost-effective. However, further discussions determined that elevators would not be the perferred method to exit the building. And an emergency power source for the fire pumps was also determined to be unnecessary because fire pumper trucks would be brought to the building. So that left only the lighting to be powered by the generator.
After 9/11 this issue should have been rexamined, but it apparently was not. Imagine a 54 story building that has two feed lines directly from the transformer on lower Columbus. Incidently, our building in Illinois Center has lost electrical power for a short time only once in 26 years. Let's assume there is a fire or explosion on the lobby level and the normal feed to the hallway and stairwell lighting is severed. Does the City of Chicago want to rely on a vunerable parallel electrical line from a generator on the lower level to feed all the emergency lighting in the black hallways and the 3 black stairwells? If that fragile single lifeline was broken by the fire or explosion, over a thousand persons would have absolutely no escape lighting. However,if a rechargeable battery pack powered several lights, those thousand persons would be able to exit the building with emergency lighting.
My 20,000 hours of experience as a military pilot and as a commercial airline captain for nearly 40 years lead to only one conclusion - the battery back-up for all emergency lighting is significantly more reliable than a remote generator. They needed the generator for the elevators and the fire pumps, but when it was determined that they were not a high priority, unfortunately the lights were left to be powered by the wrong emergency source.
This is an important life-safety issue. The National Electrical Code will give some insight to the most reliable solution. You are also the alderman to the headquarters of the largest aircraft manufacturer in the world. Please include their experience, and ask them which they would feel more comfortable with in their corporate commercial building - a single diesel generator or 500 battery packs.
This important issue needs a resolution in the next several weeks because hundreds of buildings are about to spend several hundred thousand dollars to comply with the Chicago deadline of January 1, 2003. I understand you do not ordinarily confirm receipt of either letter or email communications, but in this important matter, please confirm receiving this life-safety information.
Thank you, Richard Ward
312-938-0884, 155 Harbor Dr.#5101, Chciago, IL 60601
City of Chicago Building Department Delivery by Fax and mail
2240 W. Ogden Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60612
Dear Mr. Arendt,
It has been nearly two years since your informative presentation on back-up power at the Near North Association of Condominiums meeting. At that time I did not relate my knowledge as a commercial airline captain of the problems escaping from a dark commercial aircraft with the similarity of escaping from a dark building stairwell. Both situations need the most reliable power source to deal with a wide range of environmental conditions. They both need to insure that a break in the wiring will not leave a dark airplane or a dark stairwell. In both situations, it would be preferable to have multiple back-up power sources rather than a single back-up source. The aircraft industry has relied on battery back-up power for over a half century. We now have Boeing as a corporate member of our community. Their experience with the most reliable source of power for emergency escape lighting should be very helpful. I have first hand experience with many of their aircraft: B-727, B-737, B-747, B-757, and B-767.
The City of Chicago website relates that "the entire Chicagoland electrical industry contributed to the document and is overwhelmingly supportive and enthusiastic regarding adoption of this Year 2000 Chicago Electrical Code. The Chicago Electrical Code is a consensus document that is the product of the City of Chicago Electrical Commission in conjunction with an electrical industry 16 member Code Work Group. The Code uses the 1999 National Electrical Code format and incorporates those items from the Chicago Electrical Code that have resulted in the safe installation of electrical systems in the past."
Unfortunately the experience of the aircraft industry with emergency escape lighting was apparently not considered. We can now add the experience of 9/11 with the potential of an explosion or intense fire, destroying the generator or the extensive wiring.
The Code does provide: "Where an alternate design will provide an equivalent or greater level of safety and reliability see 18-27-700.69." Have any alternative designs been approved? The Code also provides for pre-1975 buildings that "where battery units were installed before 2/7/00, only exit signs need to conform by 2/1/03." This eliminates the requirement for an expensive single source diesel generator, and it also underscores Chicago's acknowledgement that battery back-up emergency exit lighting is inherently safe. The main problem in Chicago has been the reliability of the Edison distribution system. Factoring in the experience of the aircraft industry, the federal government (FAA), and 9/11, should lead to the conclusion that near-by or built-in multiple battery packs are a significantly more reliable source of emergency power for all exit lighting in all window-less interior exit paths.
For the City to require a single expensive remote generator and vulnerable wiring to be installed by January 1, 2003 is jeopardizing the lives of thousands of our citizens who would have difficulty escaping through darkened hallways and stairwells if the single generator source failed or the wiring was broken. Our residential and commercial citizens deserve to have all of the escape lighting operating on multiple batteries rather than the possibility that 100% of the hallways and stairwells could be dark with a single generator malfunction or line break.
Please bring this to the attention of the Electrical Commission as soon as possible and consider issuing an immediate moratorium for the diesel generator requirement. A back-up generator was necessary because of the high starting loads when the elevators and fire pumps were being considered, but that requirement was not included in the revised Code. A diesel generator is definitely not a safe choice of back-up power for emergency exit lighting. Does the National Electrical Code or any other major metropolitan region require a diesel generator and vulnerable wiring instead of batteries? If other communities are having similar difficulty understanding this issue, it is my intention to alert them of the dangers of selecting a less reliable back-up power source for emergency exit lighting. If you have that survey information, I would appreciate a copy. Please notify me if and when the Commission will be reconsidering the diesel generator requirement.
As a follow-up to my letter of April 23, 2002, this request is being submitted under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act. We are attempting to reconstruct the background of the new Chicago Electrical Code requirement for the back-up power sources for evacuation path lighting for internal stairwells and hallways. Our main focus is the requirement for a diesel generator after January 1, 2003 in all residential high-rise buildings over 300 feet. But this IFOI request is not limited to that category and height because an individual evacuating in a darkened and possibly smoky hallway and stairwell takes one step at a time. The length of the path would be longer in a 50-story building compared to a 7-story building, but the problem of the next step is the same. The specific categories of documents being requested are:
Dear Mr. Ward...On behalf of the Department of Buildings, I am responding to your Freedom of Information Act request for documents related to the new code requirement pertaining to back-up power sources.
1.Any documents received from other metropolitan areas relating to recommendations they have received from their consultants or ordinances they currently are enforcing.
The Department of Buildings does not have documents responsive to this request.
THE EXPERIENCE OF EVERY OTHER MUNICIPALITY WAS IGNORED. THERE IS NO EVIDENCE THAT ANY OTHER JURISDICTION IN THE WORLD REQUIRES A DIESEL GENERATOR FOR BACK-UP POWER FOR EVACUATION LIGHTING.
2.Any documents or recommendations exchanged with the Chicago Electrical Commission regarding back-up power sources for evacuation lighting in all buildings over the height of the fire department's highest extension ladder truck.
Meeting agendas regarding the discussion of these issues is attached.
NO MINUTES OR WRITTEN REASONING IS PROVIDED FOR MEETINGS OF THE WORKGROUP ON: 4/8/1998, 5/13/1998, 6/3/1998, 7/1/1998, 8/5/1998, 9/2/1998, 10/7/1998, 11/4/1998, 2/10/1999, 4/18/2000, 5/16/2000, 620/2000, 7/18/2000 (FINAL DRAFTS). AFTER 2 YEARS OF MEETINGS, THERE IS NOT ONE WORD OF JUSTIFICATION OR REASONING OR EVEN MENTION OF THE DIESEL GENERATOR REQUIREMENT.
3.Any documents received from outside consultants regarding this subject.
The Department of Buildings does not have documents responsive to this request.
APPARENTLY THE MEMBERS OF THE WORKGROUP WROTE ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.
4.Copies of the pertinent sections of the old and new Chicago Electrical Code.
Responsive documents are attached.
NO ATTEMPT WAS MADE TO HIGHLIGHT THE PERTINENT SECTIONS OF THE 104 ATTACHED PAGES.
5.Copies of the pertinent sections of the current National Electrical Code.
The National Electrical Code is a copyrighted document; therefore, we are unable to provide you with copies pursuant to 5 ILCS 140/7 (1)(a) as the unauthorized reproduction of copyrighted material may constitute a violation of federal or state law. I have attached a chart comparing various requirements of the Chicago Electric Code and the National Electric Code.
ON THE ATTACHED CHART, THE ONLY (REPEAT ONLY) AREA OF THE NATIONAL ELECTRICAL CODE THAT WAS SPECIFICALLY "ALTERED" WAS THE "EMERGENCY GENERATOR REQUIREMENTS".
6.Copies of approved exceptions to the diesel generator requirement that have been proven to be more effective and reliable.
The Department of Buildings does not have documents responsive to this request.
THERE ARE APPARENTLY ZERO EXCEPTIONS. NO REASONING IS PROVIDED REGARDING THE BOMA (BUILDING OWNERS AND MANAGERS ASOCIATION) REQUESTS THAT WERE APPARENTLY DENIED.
7.Copies of non-exempt documents estimating the costs of implementing the diesel generator requirement in Chicago solely for evacuation lighting and not for the non-mandated back-up sources for elevators or fire pumps.
The Department of Buildings does not have documents responsive to this request.
IT IS UNCONSCIONABLE TO MAKE NO ATTEMPT TO DETERMINE THE FINANCIAL IMPACT TO THE CITIZENS OF CHICAGO FOR AN APPARENTLY UNDESIRABLE UNIQUE REQUIREMENT THAT WILL NOT PROVIDE RELIABLE BACK-UP POWER FOR EMERGENCY EVACUATION LIGHTING IN AN ENTIRE BUILDING. IT HAS BEEN ESTIMATED THAT THIS DIESEL REQUIREMENT WILL COST $50 MILLION AND WILL NOT PROVIDE RELIABLE BACK-UP POWER IF ANY WIRE IS BROKEN. A 54 STORY HIGH-RISE CONDOMINIUM BUILDING HAS JUST CONTRACTED FOR $482,000 TO MEET THE JANUARY 1, 2003 DEADLINE.
8.Copies of any correspondence to private or public agencies regarding the reasoning for requiring diesel generators instead of individual or near-by back-up batteries.
The Department of Buildings does not have documents responsive to this request.
REQUESTS FOR ANY REASONING OR JUSTIFICATION FOR THE DIESEL GENERATOR REQUIREMENT HAVE BEEN IGNORED BY THE CITY OF CHICAGO. THIS CREATES AN INDEFENSIBLE LIABILITY EXPOSURE AND THE POTENTIAL FOR A MAJOR DISASTER IF THOUSANDS OF PERSONS CANNOT ESCAPE FROM A BUILDING BECAUSE A SINGLE WIRE WAS BROKEN OR THE STARTING BATTERY WAS DEAD.
Please call me at (312) 744-1575 if you have any questions.
Sincerely, Jennifer Hoyle
If you have any questions on this Illinois Freedom of Information request, please use email to email@example.com.
MR. ARENDT, THIS LETTER SHOULD HAVE BEEN FORWARDED TO THE CITY LAW DEPARTMENT OR THE PERSON IN YOUR DEPARTMENT RESPONSIBLE FOR ILLINOIS FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REQUESTS. I SHOULD HAVE RECEIVED AN INITIAL ANSWER WITHIN SEVEN WORKING DAYS ACCORDING TO THE ILLINOIS STATUTES. THANK YOU FOR FOLLOWING-UP ON THIS REQUESTED INFORMATION SOME OF WHICH MAY BE EXEMPT BUT NOT ALL OF IT. SINCERELY, RICHARD F. WARD 312-938-0884
As the City's Freedom of Information Officer, please follow-up on this Illinois Freedom of Information request dated May 30, 2002. Possibly 20 to 30 million dollars is currently being wasted by buildings over 300 feet to comply with the generator requirements that will be enforced on January 1, 2003. The Law Department has done a poor job educating the employees within your various departments that the Illinois statutes require that these types of requests for information require prompt response. Apparently my follow-up of July 9th was also ignored in accordance with some unwritten policy within the city on how to deal with difficult questions. Please investigate this IFOI request and advise when the information requested will be made available. Thank you.
When contacted by phone, Jennifer Hoyle advised that she did not receive the Freedom of Information Request. It was faxed to her and a few minutes later she confirmed receiving it. She assured the sender that the city would promptly respond. The City of Chicago responded that it would need additional time to collect the requested documents.
Early October, 2002
When contacted by phone, Jennifer Hoyle advised that a large envelop had been mailed by her personally and contained many of the documents requested. They were still working on the remaining documents. As of October 13, 2002, nothing has been received from the City of Chicago.
Under the May 30th date above, the response of the city was finally obtained on October 30, 2002. Unfortunately, it was incomplete.
BACK-UP POWER FOR EVACUATION LIGHTING
This page was last updated on: June 14, 2008
City of Chicago's response finally available and was picked- up on October 30, 2002. It was dated October 2, 2002 from Jennifer Hoyle, the Freedom of Information Coordinator of the Department of Law. Her response is presented in RED on this website.
Richard Ward's Follow-up Comments on October 31, 2002 in GREEN