- The Act is triggered when a member of the public submits a written request to a governmental body
- Mail or hand delivered
- Email or Fax – Receiver should instruct requestor to submit the request directly to the Open Records Office
- The request must ask for records or information already in existence
- Construe the Act liberally in favor of open government
- Treat requestors equally
- Respond to a request without delay
- A governmental body may not ask the requestor why they want the information or what they plan to do with it
PUBLIC INFORMATION LIAISON COORDINATORS
A Texas A&M employee administering or managing PI requests for employees within an executive office, division, or college.
When returning responses, it is the PILC’s responsibility to seek compliance with the Items below to the best of their ability:
- Records have been reviewed and public relations concerns regarding responsive information have been noted.
- The responding department has noted or highlighted exceptions to disclosure to the best of their knowledge for OGC consideration.
- Only records that are responsive to the request have been provided, or a confirmation that a search yielded no records has been provided.
- The Office of Open Records has been advised if other sources for this information are known.
- No questions were answered or new records were created to respond to this request. [Queries from an existing database are considered an existing document.]
The PILC may use whatever process works best in their areas to gather responsive information. Typically, the PILC identifies Departmental Liaisons that provide responsive information to them.
- It is the responding Department’s ultimate responsibility to alert and assist the PILC with the above responsibilities.
TRANSPORT OF RECORDS
- Provide records electronically
- Identify the response to each item if multiple items are requested
- Responsive files can be zipped together and sent via filex
- The University must adhere to strict timelines to remain in compliance with the Public Information Act
- If timelines are not met, it may be necessary to release information that could otherwise have been withheld as an exception to disclosure
- It is a Governmental Body’s obligation to make a good faith effort to locate and compile all documents that may be responsive to a request within the deadlines prescribed by the Act
- Consider all records open until an exception to disclosure can be identified