Records

ORS 192.324
Copies or inspection of public records

  • public body response
  • fees
  • procedure for records requests


(1)

A public body that is the custodian of any public record that a person has a right to inspect shall give the person, upon receipt of a written request:

(a)

A copy of the public record if the public record is of a nature permitting copying; or

(b)

A reasonable opportunity to inspect or copy the public record.

(2)

If an individual who is identified in a public body’s procedure described in subsection (7)(a) of this section receives a written request to inspect or receive a copy of a public record, the public body shall within five business days after receiving the request acknowledge receipt of the request or complete the public body’s response to the request. An acknowledgment under this subsection must:

(a)

Confirm that the public body is the custodian of the requested record;

(b)

Inform the requester that the public body is not the custodian of the requested record; or

(c)

Notify the requester that the public body is uncertain whether the public body is the custodian of the requested record.

(3)

If the public record is maintained in a machine readable or electronic form, the public body shall provide a copy of the public record in the form requested, if available. If the public record is not available in the form requested, the public body shall make the public record available in the form in which the public body maintains the public record.

(4)

(a) The public body may establish fees reasonably calculated to reimburse the public body for the public body’s actual cost of making public records available, including costs for summarizing, compiling or tailoring the public records, either in organization or media, to meet the request.

(b)

The public body may include in a fee established under paragraph (a) of this subsection the cost of time spent by an attorney for the public body in reviewing the public records, redacting material from the public records or segregating the public records into exempt and nonexempt records. The public body may not include in a fee established under paragraph (a) of this subsection the cost of time spent by an attorney for the public body in determining the application of the provisions of ORS 192.311 (Definitions for ORS 192.311 to 192.478) to 192.478 (Exemption for Judicial Department).

(c)

The public body may not establish a fee greater than $25 under this section unless the public body first provides the requester with a written notification of the estimated amount of the fee and the requester confirms that the requester wants the public body to proceed with making the public record available.

(d)

Notwithstanding paragraphs (a) to (c) of this subsection, when the public records are those filed with the Secretary of State under ORS chapter 79 or ORS 80.100 (Definitions for ORS 80.100 to 80.130) to 80.130 (Place to register as buyer of farm product, commission merchant or selling agent), the fees for furnishing copies, summaries or compilations of the public records are the fees established by the Secretary of State by rule under ORS chapter 79 or ORS 80.100 (Definitions for ORS 80.100 to 80.130) to 80.130 (Place to register as buyer of farm product, commission merchant or selling agent).

(5)

The custodian of a public record may furnish copies without charge or at a substantially reduced fee if the custodian determines that the waiver or reduction of fees is in the public interest because making the record available primarily benefits the general public.

(6)

A requester who believes that there has been an unreasonable denial of a fee waiver or fee reduction may petition the Attorney General or the district attorney in the same manner as a requester who petitions when inspection of a public record is denied under ORS 192.311 (Definitions for ORS 192.311 to 192.478) to 192.478 (Exemption for Judicial Department). The Attorney General, the district attorney and the court have the same authority in instances when a fee waiver or reduction is denied as when inspection of a public record is denied.

(7)

A public body shall make available to the public a written procedure for making public records requests that includes:

(a)

The name of one or more individuals within the public body to whom public records requests may be sent, with addresses; and

(b)

The amounts of and the manner of calculating fees that the public body charges for responding to requests for public records.

(8)

This section does not apply to signatures of individuals submitted under ORS chapter 247 for purposes of registering to vote as provided in ORS 247.973 (Status of signature on voter registration card as public record). [Formerly 192.440]

(formerly 192.440)

See also annotations under ORS 192.020 in permanent edition.

Notes of Decisions

Although fees charged by public body to provide edited copies of public records were authorized by city ordinance, public body failed to carry its burden under this provision to show that fees charged were reasonably related to its actual costs, when it provided no evidence to determine its actual costs. Davis v. Walker, 108 Or App 128, 814 P2d 547 (1991)

Public body could not require payment of copying fee where records were not made available for examination without copying. U.S. v. Van Horn, 156 FRD 231 (D. Or. 1994)

Public body's decision whether to grant or deny fee waiver or reduction must be objectively reasonable under totality of circumstances. In Defense of Animals v. OHSU, 199 Or App 160, 112 P3d 336 (2005)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Home-rule county may not charge fee in excess of actual cost incurred in making public record available, (1979) Vol 39, p 721

§§ 192.311 to 192.478

(formerly 192.410 to 192.505)

Notes of Decisions

Failure of legislature to include reference to courts and court records such as those particularly named in ORS 192.005 tells against application of these sections to courts. State ex rel KOIN-TV v. Olsen, 300 Or 392, 711 P2d 966 (1985)

School district's blanket policy exempting public records from disclosure without individualized showing, violates public records law and is therefore unenforceable. Guard Publishing Co. v. Lane County School Dist., 310 Or 32, 791 P2d 854 (1990)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Financial statements of hospitals as public records, (1974) Vol 36, p 893; criminal records subject to Public Records Law, (1974) Vol 37, p 126; power of county to refuse the right to copy maps, which are public records, with an individual's own equipment and to refuse to supply magnetic tape containing public records, (1979) Vol 39, p 721; Oregon Medical Insurance Pool is fundamentally private-sector body, under virtually total private control, created by state to fulfill public purpose and is not state agency or public body subject to Public Records Law, (1989) Vol 46, p 155; applicability to prison work program records, (1996) Vol 48, p 134; disclosure of personal information obtained from motor vehicle records, (1998) Vol 49, p 127

Law Review Citations

53 OLR 354-363 (1974); 55 OLR 354-359 (1976); 56 OLR 387 (1977)

Chapter 192

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Attorney General's Public Meetings and Records Manual, (1973) Vol 36, p 543; public meetings and records manual, (1976) Vol 37, p 1087; prohibition on disclosing marriage records, (1998) Vol 49, p 21


Source

Last accessed
Jun. 26, 2021