Open Records Request

[NOTE: This form has been developed to reflect the changes, effective April 17, 2012, in Georgia’s open records law.]


[Check agency website to determine if agency
has designated Open Records Act officer]

Re: Open Records Act Request

Dear ___________:

Pursuant to the Georgia Open Records Act, as amended and effective April 17, 2012, this is to respectfully request access to inspect and copy the following public records:

[identify records]

As you know, the Act does not require an agency to impose fees for providing access to public records, but if your agency intends to do so, we ask that they comply with the terms of the Act. Under the law, “an agency shall utilize the most economical means reasonably calculated to identify and produce responsive, nonexcluded documents. …. [T]he charge for the search, retrieval, or redaction of records shall not exceed the prorated hourly salary of the lowest paid full-time employee who, in the reasonable discretion of the custodian of the records, has the necessary skill and training to perform the request; provided, however, that no charge shall be made for the first quarter hour.” O.C.G.A. § 50-18-71(c)(1). In addition, according to O.C.G.A. § 50-18-71(c)(2), copying charges are not to exceed $0.10 per page or the actual cost of the cd, dvd or other media if electronic records are produced.

I am prepared to pay reasonable search and retrieval fees. However, if costs are estimated to exceed $25, your agency is required to notify me within three business days. O.C.G.A. §50-18-71(d). As you know, advance payment is not required unless costs will exceed $500. See O.C.G.A. § 50-18-71(d).

If my request is denied in whole or in part, the law requires your agency to justify all redactions by reference to the exemptions in the Act, specifying code section, subsection and paragraph. O.C.G.A. § 50-18-71(d). The law also requires you to release all other portions of a record that contains exempt material. O.C.G.A. § 50-18-72(b).
The Georgia Open Records Act sets criminal and civil penalties of $1000 for any person or entity that fails to comply with the terms of the Act. O.C.G.A. § 50-18-74. Therefore, I will expect your agency to produce the requested records within the three-day limit or give written reasons why the records are unavailable in this time period and a timetable for their prompt production. O.C.G.A. § 50-18-71(b)(1)(A).

Thank you for your attention to this request. Please do not hesitate to contact me at [telephone] or [email] if you have any questions.