To determine the fees, the City follows these principles:
- All reasonable effort must be made to determine the actual costs of searching for, retrieving, copying and, where applicable, certifying the data. The City should not charge any fee that is more than the demonstrated cost of allowable expenses.
- When possible, City staff will use the Document Solutions Center for efficient and cost-effective copying of documents.
Don’t make multiple smaller requests to avoid fees
The City may consider multiple requests by an individual or organization within 60 days as a single request.
Data about you
When you request data about yourself, the City may only charge for the actual cost of an employee to make paper copies or print copies of electronically stored data. The City will not charge you for time spent searching for and retrieving your data.
Media or other government requests
Requests made by the media or other government agencies will generally not be assessed a fee, unless the request requires the data be reformatted in a manner other than the way the City maintains it.
Data charges may include:
- Cost of media (Paper, CD ROMS, DVDs, Flash Drives, etc.)
- Mailing costs
- Employee time to prepare media (see standard hourly rate)
- Costs of reproduction that cannot be done by the entity, such as photographs, oversized materials, etc.
- Employee time to search for and retrieve the data (this charge does not apply if you are the subject of the data.)
Data charges may not include:
- Employee time to redact or separate public from not public data
- Operating expenses of office equipment
- Costs not related to preparing media, such as generating invoices or cover sheets
- Sales tax
- Accounting functions
- Costs related to the inspection of data
Laws about data charges
The following laws govern what the City may charge: