Judge upholds denial of CORA request for Visit Estes Park documents

Estes Park Trail Gazette: A Larimer District Court Judge has denied a Colorado Open Records Act (CORA) request by an Estes Park resident for the disclosure of exit interview documents completed by three employees who recently left Visit Estes Park.

The judge’s ruling supports the position taken by Visit Estes Park officials that the documents contained privileged and private information.

Visit Estes Park CEO Elizabeth Fogarty was obviously pleased with the ruling.

“We knew we were on solid ground legally,” Fogarty said Tuesday via e-mail. “Also, it was not only important to stand up for what was right based on input we received from the past employees we had exit interviews from, but also our current team. We all agreed that the organization should respect their right to privacy.

“We are proud of the way we are accomplishing our mission for the community and the extraordinary lengths we go for outreach. Visit Estes Park remains dedicated to promoting this wonderful area as a premiere tourist destination to ensure the continued success of our businesses and community as a whole, while also investing in the town to enhance our quality of life.”

Estes Park resident Michelle Hiland, who was seeking disclosure of the exit interview documents, said she respected the judge’s ruling but was also disappointed by it.

“I’m mostly disappointed, though, because this feels like just another setback with this organization,” Hiland said. “I do find it odd that Visit Estes Park is putting so much money and effort into protecting exit interviews.”

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