Title: Public Records Requests

Date: February 20, 2002

Contact: Executive Secretary

Purpose: To provide clarification and direction on responding to public records requests.

The agency fully complies with the Public Disclosure Act and the Executive Secretary acts as the agency’s Public Disclosure Officer.

To support privacy and maintain a public record of document distribution, requests for copies of agency records should be made to the Executive Secretary in writing. Payment for copies of public records, and the postage to mail such requests, must be made in advance; however, requests for copies amounting to $2 or less are exempt from the reimbursement requirement.

Consistent with RCW 18.04.405(3) the agency shall not disclose the proceedings, records, and work papers of a review committee of a quality review as defined by 18.04.025(12).

Consistent with RCW 42.17.312 and chapter 70.02 RCW the agency shall not disclose health care or medial information as defined in RCW 70.02.010(6).

Consistent with the privacy interests stated in RCW 42.17.255 and recognized by the courts, the agency shall not disclose social security numbers of any individuals.

 

Consistent with RCW 42.17.310 the agency may choose not to disclose:

Internal memorandum containing attorney/client privileged communications or attorney work product,

Information or documents associated with an active investigation,

Applications for public employment, including the names of the applicants, resumes, and other elated materials submitted with respect to an applicant,

Preliminary drafts, notes, and recommendations,

The residential addressees and residential telephone numbers of employees or volunteers of a public agency which are held by the agency in personnel records, employment or volunteer rosters, or mailing lists of employees or volunteers, and

Credit card numbers, debit card numbers, electronic check numbers, card expiration dates, or bank or other financial account numbers supplied to an agency for the purpose of electronic transfer of funds, except when disclosure is expressly required by law.

To support public protection and the privacy of Washington’s citizens, the agency will make every reasonable attempt to provide a 15 calendar-day advance written notice to the subject of the request (unless the requestor is also the subject of the request or the request falls within the provisions of RCW 42.17.260[9]) prior to disclosing the following:

Phone number(s),

Street address(es) (except city, state, province, country, and zip code may be disclosed),

E-mail address(es),

Web address(es),

Birth date(s),

Bank or other financial account numbers supplied to an agency and not expressly exempt from disclosure under RCW 42.17.310.

When available, this notice will include the name(s), phone number(s), and address(es) of the individual and/or organization making the request.

General Guidelines

Agency personnel are to:

Ensure they follow established procedures for handling and disposal of public records and copies to provide reasonable assurances that those containing confidential personal information are properly safeguarded,

Limit the collection of personal information to that reasonably necessary for purposes of program implementation, authentication of identity, security and other legally appropriate agency operations,

Maintain an Internet Privacy Statement consistent with Executive Order 00-03,

To the extent feasible, provide written notice to the public at the point of collection of their personal information that the law may require disclosure of the information as a public record,

Exercise due care when responding to inquiries to ensure accurate information is provided to the public,

Respond to all inquiries in a professional manner,

Inform customers of the agency's web site and, as appropriate, offer to provide a hard copy of information posted on the web site,

At a minimum, respond to phone calls within an average of 24 hours and written correspondence (except public records requests) within an average of seven working days,

Participate in customer service training annually, and

Upon employment and each June 30 thereafter employees will sign a statement confirming they have read this policy.

Questions outside of an employee's duties and responsibilities are to be promptly forwarded to the appropriate staff or to agency management.