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City of Tigard

Public Records Policy

Public Access to City of Tigard's Records Policy
Oregon law states that every person has a right to inspect any non-exempt public record. Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 192.410 defines a "public record" as any writing containing information relating to the conduct of the public's business, prepared, owned, used or retained by a public body regardless of the physical form or characteristics. ORS 192.410 goes on to define "writing" as handwriting, typewriting, printing, photostatting, photographing and every means of recordings of any type, which includes letters, words, pictures, sounds or symbols, or any combination thereof, and all papers, maps, magnetic or paper tapes, photographic films and prints, discs, drums or other documents.

Requests to inspect departmental records may be granted by the department director or an authorized representative. Requests to inspect records which are in the custody of central records shall be referred to the records section, which may consult with the applicable department director, or his or her designee, prior to allowing inspection or releasing such records.

If there is doubt that the records requested for inspection are not clearly within the definition of "public record," or are exempt records, the request will be referred to the city's attorney for review and recommendation.

If multiple records are being requested or if the request is for records which are not clearly, specifically and individually identified, the request shall be made in writing and shall provide sufficient descriptive information to enable staff to identify and locate the records requested.

If the records requested are documents which are produced by the city for general distribution and printed copies are available, i.e., City Council Agenda, Council Process Handbook, Cityscape, new citizen packets, brochures, etc., a copy of each document will be provided at no charge. Copies of formalized reports will be provided at the city's actual cost according to a fee schedule determined by the Finance Director.

Copies of other records will be provided at the following charges:

  1. Copies of documentary records, up to "8-1/2 x 11", that can be identified, located and produced with a nominal amount of staff time (less than one half-hour) will be provided at a charge of $0.25 per page, plus any cost of delivery. Copies that are "8-1/2 x 14" will be charged at $.50 per page, copies that are "11 x 17" will be charged $1.00 per page and copies that are 17" x 24" will be charged at $1.50 per page. Documents delivered via fax machine will be charged back at $2.00 for first page, $1.00 for each additional page.
  2. Copies of other records including records kept in a non-documentary form (oversized documents, maps, faxed documents, audio/visual recordings, microforms, electronic records, and other non-standard records) will be provided at the rate described in Oregon Administrative Rule (OAR) 166-10-0016 unless the cost is specifically set by the City of Tigard. Records which may not be covered in OAR 166-10-0016 or a city schedule will be charged back at the city's actual cost for duplicating and delivery charges.
  3. Copies of photographs that can be identified, located and produced with a nominal amount of staff time (less than one half-hour) will be provided at the actual cost for copying and delivery charges.
  4. Copies of records that require attorney time, over one-half hour, for segregation of exempt from non-exempt material will be provided at the city's actual cost for attorney time, copying and delivery charges. Staff will advise the person requesting the records of the attorney's billing rate and obtain a deposit equal to one hour of attorney time. The Finance Director will determine the final cost for attorney time based on the billing to the city.
Frequently Asked Questions 
  

What constitutes a public record?
Oregon law states that every person has a right to inspect any non-exempt public record. Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 192.410 defines a "public record" as any writing containing information relating to the conduct of the public's business, prepared, owned, used or retained by a public body regardless of the physical form or characteristics. ORS 192.410 goes on to define "writing" as handwriting, typewriting, printing, photographing and every means of recordings of any type, which includes letters, words, pictures, sounds or symbols, or any combination thereof, and all papers, maps, magnetic or paper tapes, photographic films and prints, discs, drums or other documents.

How do I request public records from the city?
Requests for public records are made through the Records Department located at City Hall. You can submit a records request online or you can contact City Records at 503-718-2483 or cityrecords@tigard-or.gov.

How soon must the city respond to a request for public records?
The ORS 192.430 requires a custodian of public records to provide proper and reasonable opportunities for inspection and examination of the records in the office of the custodian. The public body has a reasonable amount of time to respond to the request.

What can the city charge for providing copies of public records?
A public body is allowed to charge for the actual cost in making records available.

What public records are exempt from disclosure?
In Oregon the Public Records Law is a disclosure law, rather than a confidentiality law. Exemptions are contained in ORS 192.501 and are applied on a case-by-case basis.


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