Substitute House Bill No. 6595

Public Act No. 99-71

An Act Clarifying Certain Time Periods in the Freedom of Information Act and Eliminating Outdated and Unnecessary Freedom of Information Provisions.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Subsection (b) of section 1-225 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:

(b) In determining the time within which or by when a notice, agenda, [or other information is] record of votes or minutes of a special meeting or an emergency special meeting are required to be [given, made available, posted or] filed [,] under subsection (a) of this section, Saturdays, Sundays, legal holidays and any day on which the office of the agency, the Secretary of the State or the clerk of the applicable political subdivision or the clerk of each municipal member of any multitown district or agency, as the case may be, is closed, shall be excluded.

Sec. 2. Section 1-212 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:

(a) Any person applying in writing shall receive, promptly upon request, a plain or certified copy of any public record. The fee for any copy provided in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act:

(1) By an executive, administrative or legislative office of the state, a state agency or a department, institution, bureau, board, commission, authority or official of the state, including a committee of, or created by, such an office, agency, department, institution, bureau, board, commission, authority or official, and also including any judicial office, official or body or committee thereof but only in respect to its or their administrative functions, shall not exceed twenty-five cents per page; and

(2) By all other public agencies, as defined in section 1-200, shall not exceed fifty cents per page. If any copy provided in accordance with said Freedom of Information Act requires a transcription, or if any person applies for a transcription of a public record, the fee for such transcription shall not exceed the cost thereof to the public agency.

(b) The fee for any copy provided in accordance with subsection (a) of section 1-211 shall not exceed the cost thereof to the public agency. In determining such costs for a copy, other than for a printout which exists at the time that the agency responds to the request for such copy, an agency may include only:

(1) An amount equal to the hourly salary attributed to all agency employees engaged in providing the requested computer-stored public record, including their time performing the formatting or programming functions necessary to provide the copy as requested, but not including search or retrieval costs except as provided in subdivision (4) of this subsection;

(2) An amount equal to the cost to the agency of engaging an outside professional electronic copying service to provide such copying services, if such service is necessary to provide the copying as requested;

(3) The actual cost of the storage devices or media provided to the person making the request in complying with such request; and

(4) The computer time charges incurred by the agency in providing the requested computer-stored public record where another agency or contractor provides the agency with computer storage and retrieval services. Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, the fee for any copy of the names of registered voters shall not exceed three cents per name delivered or the cost thereof to the public agency, as determined pursuant to this subsection, whichever is less. The Department of Information Technology shall monitor the calculation of the fees charged for copies of computer-stored public records to ensure that such fees are reasonable and consistent among agencies.

(c) A public agency may require the prepayment of any fee required or permitted under the Freedom of Information Act if such fee is estimated to be ten dollars or more. The sales tax provided in chapter 219 shall not be imposed upon any transaction for which a fee is required or permissible under this section or section 1-227.

(d) The public agency shall waive any fee provided for in this section when:

(1) The person requesting the records is an indigent individual;

(2) The records located are determined by the public agency to be exempt from disclosure under subsection (b) of section [1-19] 1-210; or

(3) In its judgment, compliance with the applicant's request benefits the general welfare.

(e) Except as otherwise provided by law, the fee for any person who has the custody of any public records or files for certifying any copy of such records or files, or certifying to any fact appearing therefrom, shall be for the first page of such certificate, or copy and certificate, one dollar; and for each additional page, fifty cents. For the purpose of computing such fee, such copy and certificate shall be deemed to be one continuous instrument.

[(f) After consultation with the chairman of the Freedom of Information Commission, a representative of the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities and a representative of the Council of Small Towns, the Secretary of the State shall propose a fee structure for copies of public records provided in accordance with the sections set forth in subsection (a) of this section, and submit such proposal to the General Assembly not later than January 15, 1995.]

Sec. 3. Section 4d-3 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:

The Chief Information Officer may adopt regulations to carry out the purposes of sections 4d-1 to 4d-5, inclusive, section 4d-7 and sections 4d-11 to [4d-15] 4d-14, inclusive.

Sec. 4. Subsection (a) of section 4d-12 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:

(a) The Chief Information Officer may establish such committees as he deems necessary to advise said office in carrying out the purposes of sections 4d-1 to 4d-5, inclusive, section 4d-7 and sections 4d-11 to [4d-15] 4d-14, inclusive.

Sec. 5. Section 4d-15 of the general statutes is repealed.

Approved May 27, 1999

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