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Right To Know Law

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General Order: 4.11.1 Public Information and Right to Know

Purpose:

January 1, 2009 Act 3 of 2008, the Right to Know Law, became effective. This Act provided for access to public information, for a designated opens-record officer for each local agency, for procedure, and appeal of agency determination, for judicial review and for the Office of Open Records. This general order is implemented for the purpose of this department complying with the procedures set forth in the Opens Records Law.

Policy:

It shall be the policy of the the Upper Gwynedd Township Police Department that all personnel comply with the provisions of this general order.

Procedures:

  1. Providing public records.
    1. The department will provide public records in accordance with the Pennsylvania Right to Know Law.
      1. Definition of Public Records:
        1. A record, including a financial record, of a local agency that:
          1. Is not exempt under section 708 of the Right to Know Law.
          2. Is not exempt from being disclosed under any other Federal or State law or regulation or judicial order or decree.
          3. A record that is not protected by a privilege.
  2. Designation of an open records officer.
    1. The Chief of Police shall be designated the open records officer of the department.
      1. The Chief of Police shall handle requests for Criminal History Records Information Act or other requests where the information requested would not be lawfully accessible by a civilian open records officer of the Township.
    2. The Chief of Police may delegate the responsibilities of that position within the department, as he so deems necessary.
    3. Functions:
      1. The open records officer shall receive requests submitted to the agency under the Right to Know Law, direct requests to other appropriate persons within the agency or to appropriate persons in another agency.
      2. The open records officer will track the department's progress in responding to requests and issue interim and final responses under this act.
      3. Upon receiving a request for a public record(s), the open records officer will do the following:
        1. Note the date of receipt on the written request.
        2. Compute the day on which the five-day period under section 901 of the Right to Know Law will expire and make a notation of that date on the written request.
        3. Maintain an electronic or paper copy of a written request, including all documents submitted with the request until the request has been fulfilled.
          1. If the request is denied, the written request shall be maintained for 30 days or, if an appeal is filed, until final determination is issued under section 1101(b) or the appeal is deemed denied.
  3. Posting requirements.
    1. The following information will be posted at the department and, if operational, an Internet Website for the department:
      1. Contact information for the open-records officer.
      2. Contact information for the Office of Open Records or other applicable appeals officer.
      3. The Open Records Request form.
      4. Regulations, policies and procedures of the department relating to the Right to Know law.
  4. Prohibitions
    1. No policy or regulation of the department shall include any of the following:
      1. A limitation on the number of records which may be requested or made available for inspection or duplication.
      2. A requirement to disclose the purpose or motive in requesting access to records.

Effective: April 26, 2011

By order of:
David W. Duffy
Chief of Police

Right To Know Requests

  • Right To Know Request Form
    This form is to be used to gain access to public records pursuant to the Pennsylvania Right to Know Law. A public record is defined in the Law to include a document, paper, letter, map, book, tape, photograph, film or sound recording, information stored or maintained electronically and a data processed or image processed document. It does not include information which is not reduced to record form. In responding to a request, the Township is required to make available a public record which already exists; the Township is not required to create a record which does not currently exist.

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