Public Records Requests
The Western Lane Ambulance District (District) shall fully comply with the Oregon Public Records Law, ORS 192.410192.505.
- Specificity of Request: In order to facilitate the public’s access to records in the District’s possession, and to avoid unnecessary expenditure of staff time, persons requesting access to public records for inspection or copying, or who submit written requests for copies of public records, shall specify the records requested with particularity, furnishing the dates, subject matter and such other detail as may be necessary to enable District personnel to readily locate the records sought.
- Access: The District shall permit inspection and examination of its nonexempt public records during regular business hours in the District’s offices, or such other locations as the District Manager may reasonably designate from time to time.
- Copies of nonexempt public records maintained in machine readable or electronic form shall be furnished, if available, in the form requested. If not available in the form requested, such records shall be made available in the form in which they are maintained. ORS 192.440(2).
- When a request is submitted in writing, the District must respond within five business days acknowledging the receipt of the request. The District then has an additional 10 business days to fulfill the request or issue a written response estimating how long fulfillment will take. The District is not subject to this response timeframe if it is awaiting a response from the requester seeking clarification of the inquiry or if the requester has not agreed to pay for the records, provided that the cost is $25 or more. Other considerations that apply are:
- Complicated requests
- Large volume of requests
- Requests involving documents not readily available or if the necessary staff are unavailable to fulfill the request
Fees for Public Records
Fees must be limited to no more than $25.00 unless the requestor is provided with a written notification of the estimated amount of the fee and the requestor confirms that he/she wants the public body to proceed.
In order to recover its costs for responding to public records requests, the following fee schedule is adopted by the District:
- Copies of Public Records; Certified Copies: Copies of public records shall be $0.25 cents per page for letter size copies and $0.30 per copy for legal size copies. Double sided copies count as two (2) pages. Copies shall be certified for an additional charge of $2.50.
- Copies of Sound Recordings: Charges for tape recordings and other electronically stored materials will be calculated based upon the actual cost of the tape, computer disc, etc., plus the time required to make the copy, computed at the rate of $5.00/quarter hour, with a minimum charge of one quarter hour.
- Copies of Maps and Other Nonstandard Documents: Charges for copying maps or other nonstandard size documents shall be charged in accordance with the actual costs incurred by the District.
- Research Fees: If a request for District records requires personnel to spend more than 15 minutes collecting or reviewing the requested records prior to their release or copying, the requester will be billed at an hourly rate of $5.00/quarter hour for each staff member involved, with a minimum of one half hour ($10.00) charge. The total staff time to collect and review the requested records will be estimated by the District, and the estimated fee must be deposited with the District before District personnel will begin collecting, reviewing or copying the requested records. If the amount of time involved is less than estimated, the excess deposit shall be refunded to the requester. If the actual cost is in excess of the deposit, the difference must be paid by the requester before the requested documents are provided. The actual costs of research will be billed to the requester even if District personnel are unable to locate the requested records, or the District determines that the requested records are exempt from disclosure under the Public Records Act.
- Additional Charges: If a request is of such magnitude and nature that compliance would disrupt the District’s normal operation, the District may impose such additional charges as are necessary to reimburse the District for its actual costs of producing the records.
- Reduced Fee or Free Copies: Whenever it determines that furnishing copies of public records in its possession at a reduced fee or without costs would be in the public interest, the Board or District Manager may so authorize. ORS 192.440(4).
Authorization Required for Removal of Original Records
At no time shall an original record of the District be removed from the District’s files or the place at which the record is regularly maintained, except upon authorization of the Board of Directors or Manager of the District.
On-Site Review of Original Records
If a request to review original records is made, the District shall permit such a review provided that search fees are paid in advance in accordance with the Fees for Public Records section, above. A representative shall be present at any time original records are reviewed, and the charges for standing by while the records are reviewed shall be the same as the charges for searching or reviewing records.
Unauthorized Alteration, Removal, or Destruction of Records
If any person attempts to alter, remove or destroy any District record, the District representative shall immediately terminate such person’s review, and notify the attorney for the District.