Public Records FAQs
What is a "public record"?
A public record is a writing kept by a public body that contains information relating to the conduct of the public’s business. Most public records can be disclosed, but some records and some specific details within records are exempt from disclosure under the Oregon Public Records Law and/or other state or federal privacy laws.
Who can make a public records request?
Any person, whether representing themselves or any other organization, has a right to request and review any public record of an Oregon public body if that record is not exempt from disclosure.
How do you make a public records request?
Public records requests may be made via the Online Request Form. The request should clearly describe the records being requested. Rogue Community College’s Public Records Request Form is required. Our office may follow-up with the requester to get more information to help us identify the records being requested. Contact information is available here.
How long does it take to get a response?
The college responds to a public records request "as soon as practicable and without unreasonable delay" as required by law.
Does one have to pay for public records?
As allowed under Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 192.440, the College charges for the actual cost of making public records available. This includes all staff time involved (calculated based on an average hourly rate of pay and benefits by employee type), a per-page fee for photocopies, and any mailing or delivery charges. Staff time includes locating, gathering, reviewing, summarizing, compiling, reviewing, monitoring (if a request is made to inspect records on-site), tailoring, copying or redacting the public records in response to a request. RCC provides the requester with an estimated total cost, and begins work when payment is received. In some circumstances, upon petition by the requester, the College may reduce or waive certain fees.
What public records are exempt from disclosure?
Some public records can be conditionally or unconditionally exempt from disclosure, depending on the nature of the record. The reasons for exemption vary but are always provided by either state or federal law, and are often related to protecting personal information of students, employees, or other individuals. Where permitted by law, some public records containing both exempt and non-exempt material may be separated or redacted and the nonexempt material made available. Student records are not public records. For more information on the legal context in which exemptions or redactions are made, the text of ORS 30.864 and a 2011 Oregon Department of Justice Opinion on FERPA and Public Records might be helpful.
Where can you get a copy of Oregon’s Public Records Law?
Oregon Public Records Law addresses fees at ORS 192.324 and exemptions at ORS 192.345 and ORS 192.355. Another helpful resource is the Oregon Attorney General Public Records and Meetings Manual.
(For RCC Employees) What do you do if your office gets a public records request?
More information is available via the Online Request Form.