Middle Fork Crow River Watershed District
Public Data Request Policy
This policy is in effect for all persons or entities that come to the Middle Fork Crow River Watershed District (MFCRWD) with a direct request to review information and/or to review files, and all those who request information from MFCRWD via mail, facsimile, e-mail, by telephone or in person.
The MFCRWD will attempt to fill all reasonable requests for information from its files and computerized database (subject to the restrictions of the Minnesota Governmental Data Practices Act, copyright laws, decisions of the Office of the Attorney General, and the availability of staff time). When appropriate, fees will be charged to recover the costs incurred in providing such information.
The MFCRWD’s files are open to the public unless classified by statutes, or temporary classifications pursuant to Minn. Stat. 13.06, or federal law, as non-public or protected non-public, or with respect to data on individuals, as private or confidential. The MFCRWD will keep its records containing government data in such an arrangement and condition as to make them reasonably accessible for inspection. Persons wishing to request information are asked to complete a Public Information Request form available at the MFCRWD office or via email; the MFCRWD will attempt to complete the request in two business days. Persons wishing to inspect files are asked to schedule an appointment at least two business days in advance with the MFCRWD’s designee. This two business day lead time may need to be extended for cases in which a file needs to be reviewed for confidential information, or in the event the district’s designee is unavailable. Appointments are to be scheduled during MFCRWD’s business hours on Monday through Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. File reviews will be scheduled as soon as possible, depending upon the availability of the appointments and the status of the file. Staff will provide general assistance; however, the person requesting the information may remain responsible for searching through the file to find the desired information.
That the MFCRWD Administrator is designated as the responsible authority of Management of data practices of the MFCRWD.
Pursuant to Minn. Stat. 13.03, Subd. 3, if copies of information/documents are requested from files or electronically maintained information, the MFCRWD will charge searching, retrieving, compiling and copying costs. Clients will be charged in quarter-hour increments. No charge will be assessed if files are inspected and no copies are requested.
The MFCRWD will provide copies of documents if requested. Clients may indicate what they would like to have copied by tabbing the pages desired with the supplies provided by the MFCRWD. Individual pages identified by the requester will be copied and charged, in addition to the searching, retrieving, compiling and postal charges. A double-sided sheet is considered two pages. Clients may pick up their copies at the MFCRWD office once they are completed, or make arrangements with the MFCRWD to have the copies mailed.
The MFCRWD may charge for copies as follows: (1) for 100 or fewer black and white pages, charges are limited to 25 cents per page; (2) for color copies or more than 100
pages, the MFCRWD may charge its actual costs including costs of searching for and retrieving data, the cost of employee time, and for making, certifying, compiling, and electronically transmitting data.
The MFCRWD will make arrangements with a vendor when client’s request reproduction of agency photographs and slides, large maps, plan sheets, diskettes, videotapes or other media (since those documents are not allowed to leave the building). The prices will vary depending on the services desired by the client. Quotes may be obtained from the MFCRWD Administrator.
The client shall pay all charges for copying and services provided by the MFCRWD in advance of receiving the requested information.
When a request for data involves any person’s receipt of copies of MFCRWD data that has commercial value and is a substantial and discrete portion of or an entire formula, pattern, compilation, program, device, method, technique, process, database, or system developed with a significant expenditure of public funds by the agency, the MFCRWD may charge a reasonable fee for the information in addition to the costs of making, certifying, and compiling the copies, with the fee charged to relate to the actual development costs of the information. The MFCRWD will provide sufficient documentation to explain and justify the fee being charged.
Upon the request of any person who is denied access to data, the MFCRWD will certify in writing that the request has been denied and cite the specific statutory section, temporary classification, or specific provision of federal law upon which the denial was based.
EXHAUSTION OF ADMINISTRATIVE REMEDIES
These policies will be administered consistently with Minnesota law. In the event that a requester believes that these policies or implementation are contrary to Minnesota law, the requester may register an objection in writing with the Board President who will provide a prompt ruling.