Form of Record: Paper, Electronic, Etc.

Attorney General Opinion Sept 27 2013

A public official's constituent newsletter may or may not be a public record; it depends on the content and use of the newsletter. However, if you assume the newsletter is a public record, the email distribution list used to send the newsletter is would not be exempt from disclosure.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-08-09

Public records posted on a public body's Web site remain subject to FOIA. It is generally expected that public bodies will not charge for sending brief electronic mail messages providing Web addresses or copied excerpts of electronic records, as the actual costs incurred usually are negligible.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-06-09

Without a prior agreement, when a requester asks for records to be sent via e-mail, the government cannot bill the requester for the cost and mileage involved with delivering the records via certified mail.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-07-08

Failure to respond to a request for records is deemed a denial of the request and a violation of FOIA. Clear communications are essential to FOIA transactions.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-21-03

If database is maintained in digital form, the records custodian cannot limit dissemination of the database to paper format only. Circuit courts cannot charge 50 cents per page for records subject to FOIA when those records are provided electronically; clerk could charge for search time and cost of computer disks.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-11-02

The FOI Advisory Council does not have authority to interpret the First Amendment. A circuit court is subject to FOIA. If the clerk's office maintains a digital database of land conveyances, that database must be made accessible to a requester.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-10-02

a list of delinquent real property taxpayers with parcel ID, legal description, and owner's name with mailing address is a public record under FOIA. If government maintains a record on a computer disk, a requester can agree to receive a requested record in that form and pay a reasonable cost for it, not to exceed the actual cost. Government has five days to make an intitial response to a FOIA request. FOI Advisory Council opinions are advisory only.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-03-02

Expenditure records of the Department of Housing and Community Development are public records. Where detailed records exist, a summary of the information is not an acceptable response to a request for the actual records.

Attorney General's Opinion 2002 #002

Library record showing which materials a minor has checked out and which materials are overdue are exempted from mandatory disclosure, even to the parent of the minor, library records exemption, #10.

Attorney General's Opinion 2001 #091

A commissioner of revenue may provide remote Internet access to the names of businesses licensed to do business in a locality.


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