The purpose of this rule is to facilitate prompt access to public records and to ensure compliance with the Ohio public records act. All employees responsible for making university records available to the public are expected to comply with the university's public records rule.
This rule covers all employees who are custodians of university records.
"Public record" is any record kept by the university, including any document, device, or item, regardless of physical form or characteristic, that is created or received by or coming under the jurisdiction of the university, which serves to document the organization, functions, rules, decisions, procedures, operations, or other activities of the university.
(1) Making a request
(a) All public records requests should be forwarded to the office of the general counsel for handling. Requests can be made in person, by telephone, or in writing (including email).
(b) The requester must at least identify the records requested with sufficient clarity and specificity to allow the university office to identify, retrieve, and review the records.
(2) Responding to a request
(a) The university is not obligated to create a record that contains the information requested if the record does not already exist. In addition, the university does not have to sort or filter any records in order to retrieve specific information that may be on interest the requester.
(b) The university can decline to respond to any public records request it concludes is ambiguous or overly broad. If a request is denied in whole or in the part, then it shall provide the requester with an explanation, including legal authority, documenting the basis for the denial. In doing so, the university may assist the requester by informing the requester of the manner in which the university records are maintained.
(c) The university must respond to all public records requests within a reasonable period of time. The amount of time that records will be made available to a requester will depend upon, among other things, the number of records requested, the location of the records, the medium in which the records are stored, the need for legal review, and the need to redact information. Requesters seeking an inordinately large number of records will be given an estimated timeframe for their response.
(d) The university may not limit the number of public records requests that a single individual can make, nor limit the number of public records that will be made available during a fixed period of time.
(e) When a public records request is made to examine a personnel file, the university office will, to the extent practicable, notify the employee that his or her records have been requested and, if known, the name of the individual making the request.
(3) Availability of records
(a) Public records are available for inspection during regular business hours, with the exception of published holidays.
(b) The university has a copy of its records retention, available on its website, under the office of the general counsel materials.
(c) The university may charge a requester for the actual costs associated with producing copies, including copying and mailing expenses.
(4) Contents of a record
At times, the university may need to redact certain information prohibited from release (i.e., social security numbers). Any redactions will be plainly visible or explained to the requester.