Public Information Request

The Holmes County Sheriff's Office

Public Information Request

OPEN RECORDS POLICY

Public Records of this Office include any fixed medium that serves to document the official function of this office.

Public Records requests will be accepted Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 4:00pm excluding legal holidays.

Records request forms are available for your convenience. You are not required to complete one in order to receive the requested records.

Fees charged are due at the time the record is picked up. Pre-payment is required prior to records being mailed or faxed. Fees charged include only the costs to reproduce and send the record. See separate cost schedule.

Records that are immediately available will be provided immediately.

Requests for old records or a large volume of records will be provided as quickly as possible, usually within 3 business days. You will be notified in writing if it will take longer than 3 business days.

Contact us today if you have any questions at 330-674-1936

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Ohio Public Records Law

  1. Policy
  2. Definitions
  3. Records Request
  4. Regular Business Hours
  5. Records & Delivery Costs
  6. Records Retention Schedule
  7. Open Records Policy – Public Posting
  8. Records Request Form

1.  POLICY

A. The Holmes County Sheriff’s Office is a publicly funded agency and is subject to the rules regulations contained in Ohio’s Public Records Law.

B. The latest legislative changes to Ohio Public Records Law is commonly known as House Bill 9, containing amendments or enactments to O.R.C. Section 109, 149, 321, 2923, 3319, and 4123.

1.  The effective date of the terms and provisions in H.B. 9 is September 29, 2007

C. It has always been the policy of the Holmes County Sheriff’s Office to respond to requests for public records in as timely a manner as possible in accordance with the law.

D. In response to the provision of H.B. 9, the Homes County Sheriff’s Office will:

1. organize and maintain its Public Records so that they will be readily available for inspection and copying within a reasonable period of time
2. designate records custodians for the purpose of organizing and maintaining its records and providing copies of requested records to the public
3. create and post its Public Records policy in a conspicuous place (public lobby)
4. create an approved Records Retention Schedule and include it with this policy
5. create a cost schedule detailing the “actual costs” that will be charged when providing requested records to the public
6. establish and post "business hours" when records requests can be submitted and picked up
7. make every effort to comply with the provisions set forth in O.R.C. 149 and other sections of State and Federal law pertaining to Public Records
8. create and include this Public Record Policy as part of the overall Sheriff’s Office Policy Manual

2. DEFINITIONS

A. Records

1. Records include any document, device or item regardless of physical form or characteristics including an electronic record as defined in O.R.C. 1306.01, created, received by or coming under the jurisdiction of any public office of the State or its political subdivisions which serves to document any of the following:

a. organization
b. functions
c. policies
d. procedures
e. decisions
f. operations, or
g. other activities of the office

B. Public Record

1. Records kept by any public office including, but not limited to state, county, city, village, township, and school district units. Public Record does not mean any of the following:

a. medical records
b. records pertaining to probation/parole proceedings or proceedings related to imposition of community control and post-release control sanctions
c. trial preparation records
d. confidential law enforcement investigatory records
e. DNA records stored in a DNA database pursuant to O.R.C. 109.573
f. peace officer, fire fighter, or EMT residential and familial information
g. other records and descriptions included in O.R.C. 149.43

C. Redaction

1. Means obscuring or deleting any information that is exempt from the duty to permit public inspection or copying from an item that otherwise meets the definition of a “record” in section 149.011 O.R.C.

D. Fixed Medium

1. Any item that cannot change on its own – including but not limited to:

a. paper
b. videos
c. photographs
d. maps
e. emails
f. drafts
g. notes
h. phone messages

2. Fixed medium does not include:

a. spoken words
b. thoughts
c. computer programs that change automatically

E. Commercial Purposes

1. Profit seeking production, buying, or selling of any good, service or product.

F. Actual Costs

1. Means the cost of depleted supplies, records storage media costs, actual mailing, and alternative delivery costs or other transmitting costs and any direct equipment operating and maintenance costs including actual costs paid to private contractors for copying services.

3. RECORDS REQUEST

A. Person making the request (the Requester/the Public:)

1. Must make the request with sufficient clarity to allow the Records Custodian to identify, retrieve, and review the records for delivery

2. May submit the request in writing:

a. is not required to do so

3. May provide identification and reason for request:

a. Is not required to do so

4. May specify which fixed medium the requested record is provided in, however:

a. cannot force the Sheriff’s Office to provide the record on a fixed medium not used by or available to the Sheriff’s Office.

5. Can expect the requested records to be provided within a reasonable period of time which can vary depending on:

a. the number or volume (size) of the record requested
b. the age of the record and where they are stored
c. how much information contained in the record is subject to redaction
d. whether the record requires legal review before it is released
e. whether the record is still available

6. May be required to pay or pre-pay for the record before delivery:

a. cost will include only those actual costs incurred to produce the record for delivery and will not include time and labor cost
b. if payment is required, no records will be provided until they are paid for
c. no records will be provided in any medium other than what is commonly used by this office for records storage

7. May be denied access to all or part of the requested record if:

a. those records specifically exempted by the O.R.C. or federal law
b. lawful reason provided by legal review (prosecutor or legal counsel)
c. redacted portions as provided for by law
d. the record no longer exists (completed RC-1, RC-2, and RC-3 as applicable)

B. Person providing the record(s) (the Records Custodian(s), this Office)

1. Will respond to a public records request within a reasonable period of time:

a. provide the record requested or acknowledge receipt of records request in writing within three business days following receipt of the request by the office

2. May request the identification of the requester and the records request in writing:

a. allow the requester to further clarify the record they are seeking
b. if not clarified, the requester may be denied until clarified
c. request can be denied if the record sought is not one maintained by the office

3. May request the identification of the requester and the records request in writing:

a. the requester is not required to provide identification
b. the requester is not required to submit the records request in writing
c. the records custodian is required to provide the requested records regardless
d. requester must be notified that they are not required to provide this information

4. May supply the requested records in the medium specified by the requester:

a. if that type of medium is used by this office, supply as requested
b. if not, the record will be provided in the same medium “as stored” or other medium readily available and regularly used by this office
c. there is no obligation to provide the record in a medium not used in this office
d. if stored or available on more than one type of medium the records custodian will advise the requester of the choices and the cost associated with each

5. May take longer than 3 business days depending on:

a. the number or volume (size) of the record requested
b. the age of the record and where it is stored
c. the amount of information on the record requiring redaction
d. whether the record requires legal review before it is released (prosecutor/legal counsel)
e. whether the record is still available
f. records custodian will notify requester when the records will be ready for pickup

6. May require a fee to provide the records requested:

a. costs can only cover the materials used to provide the record in the requested medium (paper, postage, CD's, fax transmissions, tapes etc.)
b. cannot include time and labor costs
c. see section 11.5 for costs of specific mediums

7. May deny access to all or part of the requested record:

a. any record specifically exempted by the O.R.C. or federal law
b. any lawful reason provided by legal review (prosecutor or legal counsel)
c. redacted portions as provided for by law
d. the record no longer exists (completed RC-1, RC-2, RC-3 as applicable)
e. records custodian must inform the requester of the refusal or inability to provide the requested records and must include the legal reason for the refusal
f. notification of any denial of access to records must be in writing if the original request for records was made in writing

C. Improper reasons for denial (Records Custodian(s))

1. It will take too much time to locate the record
2. It is not a record about the person requesting the record
3. The requester will not give a reason why they want the document
4. The requester did not put their request in writing

D. Additional limitations/conditions

1. Postal (United States mail) requests are limited to ten per month, unless:

a. The requester certifies in writing that they do not intend to use or forward the requested records or the information contained in them for commercial purposes

2. Other records specifically exempted not previously mentioned (see O.R.C. 149.43(A)(7)
3. Requester cannot compel the office to create a record to provide the information they are seeking
4. Redactions made must be plainly visible, if not, requester must be notified
5. Records Custodian cannot charge the requester for the time (labor) it takes to provide the record
6. Records Custodian cannot charge the requester for inspecting the record (on site, no copies made)

4. REGULAR BUSINESS HOURS

A. Monday – Friday
B. 8:00 A.M. – 4:00 P.M.
C. (excluding all legal holidays)

Records requests must be submitted during the regular business hours specified above.

No requests for records will be accepted at times other than those specified above.

Fulfilled and prepaid records requests may be picked up at times other than specified above provided arrangements are made in advance.

*As of 4/16/2015 any record request(s) that have not been picked up within six (6) months, after arrangements have made for pickup, will be discarded.  If the discarded record(s) are still needed after the six (6) month period, another request(s) shall be submitted and that request(s) will be accommodated according to policy.

 5. RECORDS AND DELIVERY COSTS

A. Photo copies per page (one sided)
     1. 10 cents

B. Photo copies per page (two sided - if original is printed both sides)
     1. 15 cents

C. CD with case (DVD)
     1. 65 cents (85 cents)

D. CD without case- requester assumes responsibility if CD is shipped w/o case and is damaged or unusable (DVD)
     1. 40 cents (60 cents)

E. Faxed copies (per page)
     1. local - 5 cents
     2. long distance - 10 cents

F. Regardless of medium selected, prepayment is required before record will be delivered
     1. Cash, money order, cashier’s check or other guaranteed payment method accepted
     2. No personal or business checks will be accepted

G. New or updated methods of records storage and retrieval will be added if or when they are used

H. Envelopes and Mailing Jackets (Postage will be charged at current postal rates)
     1. Legal size envelopes (maximum 5 pages per envelope)
         a. 5 cents each
     2. 9 X 12 Kraft Envelopes (maximum 50 pages per envelope)
         a. 10 cents each
     3. 7.25 X 8 Self Seal CD Mailer (maximum 3 CD's with cases)
         a. 80 cents each
     4. If other sizes of mailers are necessary, they will be charged based upon their actual cost

I. Information stored on computer hard-drives, servers or other electronic means can be sent to an E-Mail address provided by the requester
     1. E-Mails are sent to the requester at no charge
     2. If we are unable to send the requested information via E-Mail after 2 attempts, the requester will have the option of selecting to receive it in another available medium
     3. Costs associated with "other mediums" previously described will apply

J. We will attempt to review and revise these costs as needed, however the listed costs are to be used as a guide only. Actual costs will be charged at the time of the request.

6. RECORDS RETENTION SCHEDULE

 O.R.C. 149.351

All records are the property of the Public Office concerned and shall not be removed, destroyed, mutilated transferred or otherwise damaged or disposed of, in whole or in part except as provided by law or under the rules adopted by the Records Commission provided for under sections 149.38 to 149.42 of the Revised Code.

Links & Downloadable Resources

Address

8105 Township Road 574
Holmesville, Ohio 44633

Phone

EMERGENCY:  DIAL 9-1-1

Non-emergency: (330) 674-1936

FAX

(330) 674-8504

Email

info@holmescountysheriff.org