Public Records Request

 

Purpose: The purpose is to establish and set guidelines for processing requests from the public for RECORDS held by the Hudson City School District whether paper, electronic or other format.

 

Policy: Hudson City School District Bylaws & Policies

#8310—Public Records       http://www.neola.com/hudson-oh/

 

Definition: "Public records" are defined as any document, device, or item, regardless of physical form or characteristic, including an electronic record created or received by or coming under the jurisdiction of the Board or its employees, which serves to document the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, operations, or other activities of the District. "Electronic record" is defined as a record created, generated, sent, communicated, received, or stored by electronic means. "Public records" do not include medical records, trial preparation records, confidential law enforcement investigatory records, records the release of which is prohibited by State or Federal law, and any other exceptions set forth in R.C. 149.43. Confidential law enforcement investigatory records, medical records, and trial preparation records are as defined in R.C. 149.43.

 

PROCEDURE: Each request for public records shall be evaluated for a response at the time it is made.

 

1.  Although no specific language is required to make a request, the requester must minimally identify the record(s) requested with sufficient clarity to allow the District to identify, retrieve, and review the record(s). If a requestor makes an ambiguous or overly broad request or has difficulty in making a request for inspection or copies of public records such that the District's Record Officer cannot reasonably identify what public records are being requested, the District Record Officer or designee may deny the request but shall provide the requestor with an opportunity to revise the request by informing the requestor of the manner in which records are maintained by the District and accessed in the ordinary course of business.

 

2.  The request for records doesnotneedto be in writing. The requestor shallnotbe required to provide his/her identity or the intended use of the requested public record(s).

 

3. At the time of the request, the records custodian shall inform the person making the request of the estimated length of time required to gather the records. All requests for public records shall be satisfied or acknowledged by the District promptly following the receipt of the request. If the request for records was in writing, the acknowledgement by the District shall also be in writing.

    

    Any request deemed significantly beyond routine, such as seeking a voluminous number of copies and/or records, or requiring extensive research, the acknowledgement shall include the following:

 

 an estimated number of business days necessary to satisfy the request

 an estimated cost if copies are requested

 any items within the request that may be exempt from disclosure

 

4.  The Superintendent is authorized to grant or refuse access to the records of this District in accordance with the law. Any denial, in whole or in part, of a public records request must include an explanation, including legal authority. If portions of a record are public and portions are exempt, the exempt portions are to be redacted and the rest released. If there are redactions, the requester must be notified of the redaction and/or the redaction must be plainly visible, and each redaction must be accompanied by a supporting explanation, including legal authority. If the request for records was in writing, the explanation shall also be in writing.

 

5.   A person may obtain copies of the District’s public records upon payment of a fee. A person who requests a copy of a public record may request to have said record duplicated on paper, on the same medium on which the District keeps the record, or on any other medium in which the custodian of records determines that said record reasonably can be duplicated as an integral part of normal operations.

 

    A person who requests a copy of a public record may choose to have that record sent to him/her by United States mail or by other means of delivery or transmission provided the person making the request pays in advance for said record as well as the costs for postage and the mailing supplies.

 

6.  The number of records requested by a person that the District will transmit by U.S. mail shall be limited to ten (10) per month, unless the person certifies, in writing to the District, that the person does not intend to use or forward the requested records, or the information contained in them, for commercial purposes. "Commercial" shall be narrowly defined and does not include reporting or gathering news, reporting gathering information to assist citizen oversight or understanding of the operation or activities of the District, or nonprofit educational research. (R.C. 149.43(B)(7))

 

7.  Those seeking public records will be charged only the actual cost of making copies.

 

8. Documents in electronic mail format are records as defined by the Ohio Revised Code when their content relates to the business of the District (i.e., they serve to document the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, operations, or other activities of the District). E-mail shall be treated in the same fashion as records in other formats and shall follow the same retention schedule.

    

    Records in private e-mail accounts are subject to disclosure if their content relates to public business, and all employees or representatives of the District are responsible for retaining e-mails that meet the definition of public records and copying them to their District e-mail account(s) and/or to the records custodian.

 

    The records custodian shall treat such e-mail/records from private accounts as records of the District. These records shall be filed appropriately, retained in accordance with the established schedules, and made available for inspection and copying in accordance with the Public Records Act.

 

    Private e-mail, electronic documents, and documents ("private records") that do not serve to document the District's organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, operations or other activities are not public records. Although private do not fall under Policy8310or AG8310A, they may fall under Policy8315– "Information Management" and/or AG 8315 – "Litigation Hold Procedure".

 

 
 
 
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