DeKalb County considers access to public records of paramount importance. After the county receives a request for public records, the department which the request is addressed has three (3) business days to determine whether records are in that department’s custody and whether the records are subject to disclosure under the Georgia Open Records Act as amended in 2012 (O.C.G.A 50-18-70-75 et al). A response must be made within three business days to the individual who requested the records, even if the records will take longer than that to produce. Residents who request records but there are no responsive documents that exist should get a response stating such within three business days.
Unless the requested records are exempt from production requirements of the ORA, inspection or copying of the requested records must be permitted.
In most cases, the custodian of records is the director or a deputy director of the department in which the records are kept. The Chief Executive Officer and the Board of Commissioners are not the custodians of all county public records. Rather, an elected official is the custodian of only those county public records prepared or maintained in that official’s office. All county public records should be sought from the appropriate custodian.
The Georgia Open Records Act does not require the creation of records, reports, summaries or compilations not already in existence at the time of the request.
The Department applies an hourly charge for administrative and clerical staff related to the search, retrieval, review, preparation and copying of the department's records. The first fifteen minutes are free of charge, however, time after that is based on an hourly charge of $16.10 per hour. If the estimated cost to respond is over $25, the department must notify the requestor of the estimated amount within three business days of receiving the request, but is not required to begin retrieving documents until the requestor agrees to pay the estimated cost. If the estimated cost is over $500, the department will not begin retrieving documents until the requestor pays the estimated costs. A department can charge no more than 10 cents per page for copies of letter/legal size documents, and actual cost for copies of other- sized documents. The labor rate for search, retrieval, redaction, and production will be the hourly rate of the lowest-paid employee who is qualified to fulfill the request.
Requests for review of records, documents, files and contracts may be forwarded via the following methods, or submission of this form:
Payment is due upon receipt of your copies. Payment options are limited to check or money order made payable to DeKalb County Government, GA.
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