Town of Delaware, NY
Sullivan County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Delaware as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 2-15-1995 by L.L. No. 1-1995]

§ 58-1 Department officer.

There shall be a records management program established under the aegis of the Town Board of the Town of Delaware and headed by a records management officer (RMO). The officer will be responsible for administering the noncurrent and archival public records and storage areas for the Town of Delaware in accordance with local, state and federal laws and guidelines. The RMO shall be the Town Clerk of the Town of Delaware.

§ 58-2 Powers and duties.

The officer shall have all the necessary powers to carry out the efficient administration, determination of value, use, preservation, storage and disposition of the noncurrent and archival public records kept, filed or received by the offices and departments of the Town of Delaware.
A. 
The records management officer shall continually survey and examine public records to recommend their classification so as to determine the most suitable methods to be used for the maintaining, storing and servicing of archival material:
(1) 
Obsolete and unnecessary records according to New York State Records Retention and Disposition Schedules thereby subject to disposition; or
(2) 
Information containing administrative, legal, fiscal, research historical or educational value which warrant their permanent retention; or
(3) 
Records not subject to disposition according to state law.
B. 
Establish guidelines for proper records management in any department or agency of the Town of Delaware in accordance with local, state and federal laws and guidelines.
C. 
Report annually to the chief executive official and the governing body on the powers and duties herein mentioned, including, but not limited to, the cost/benefit ratio of programs effectuated by the Department.
D. 
The officer shall operate a records management center for the storage, processing and servicing of all noncurrent and archival records for all Town of Delaware departments and agencies.
E. 
The officer shall establish a Town of Delaware archives and perform the following functions:
(1) 
Advise and assist Town of Delaware departments in reviewing and selecting material to be transferred to the Town of Delaware archives for preservation.
(2) 
Continually survey and examine public records to determine the most suitable methods to be used for the creating, maintaining, storing and servicing of archival materials.
(3) 
Establish and maintain an adequate repository for the proper storage, conservation, processing and servicing of archival records.
(4) 
Promulgate rules governing public access to and use of records in the archives, subject to the approval of the Records Advisory Board.
(5) 
Develop a confidentiality policy for archival records designated confidential, providing such policy does not conflict with any federal or state statutes.
(6) 
Provide information services to the Town of Delaware officers.
(7) 
Collect archival materials which are not official Town of Delaware records but which have associational value to the Town of Delaware or a close relationship to the existing archival collection. Such collecting shall be subject to archive space, staff and cost limitations, and to the potential endangerment of such materials if they are not collected by the archives.
(8) 
Develop a procedure whereby historically important records are to be identified at the point of generation.

§ 58-3 Records Advisory Board. [1]

There shall be a Records Advisory Board designated to work closely with and provide advice to the records management officer. The Board shall consist of the Supervisor of the Town of Delaware, one Town Councilman designated by the Town Supervisor, the Town Historian or a resident of the Town of Delaware as appointed by the Town Supervisor. The Board shall meet periodically and have the following duties:
A. 
Provide advice to the records management officer on the development of the records management program;
B. 
Review the performance of the program on an ongoing basis and propose changes and improvements;
C. 
Review retention periods proposed by the records management office for records not covered by State Archives' schedules;
D. 
Provide advice on the appraisal of records for archival value and to be the final sign-off entity as to what is or is not archived.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).

§ 58-4 Custody.

A. 
A Town of Delaware department is the legal custodian of its records and shall retain custody of records deposited in the records center. Records transferred to or acquired by the archives shall be under the custody and control of the archives rather than the department which created or held them immediately prior to being transferred to the archives.
B. 
Records shall be transferred to the archives upon the recommendation of the RMO, with the approval of the head of the department which has custody of the records and the approval of the Records Advisory Board.
C. 
Records may be permanently removed from the archives at the request of the RMO or the head of the department which had custody of the records immediately prior to the transfer of those records to the archives, subject to the approval of the Records Advisory Board.

§ 58-5 Replevin.

The Legal Department may take steps to recover local government records which have been alienated from proper custody and may, when necessary, institute actions of replevin.

§ 58-6 Disposal of records.

No records shall be destroyed or otherwise disposed of by a department of the Town of Delaware unless approval has been obtained from the records management officer. No records shall be destroyed or otherwise disposed of by the records management officer without the express written consent of the department head having authority.

§ 58-7 Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ARCHIVES
Those official records which have been determined by the officer and advisory committee to have sufficient historical or other value to warrant their continued preservation by the local government.
RECORDS
Any documents, books, papers, photographs, sound recordings, microforms, or any other materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made or received pursuant to law or ordinance or in connection with the transaction of official Town of Delaware business.
RECORDS CENTER
An establishment maintained by the Town of Delaware primarily for the storage, servicing, security and processing of records which must be preserved for varying periods of time and need not be retained in office equipment or space.
A. 
The removal by the Town of Delaware, in accordance with approved records control schedules, of records no longer necessary for the conduct of business by such agency, through removal methods which may include:
(1) 
The disposal of temporary records by destruction or donation; or
(2) 
The transfer of records to the record center/archives for temporary storage of inactive records and permanent storage of records determined to have historical or other sufficient value warranting continued preservation.
B. 
The transfer of records from one Town of Delaware agency to any other Town of Delaware agency.
RECORDS MANAGEMENT
The planning, controlling, directing, organizing, training, promotion and other managerial use and records disposition, including records preservation, records disposal and records center or other storage facilities.
SERVICING
Making information in records available to any Town of Delaware agency for official use or to the public.
[Adopted at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I)]

§ 58-8 Purpose and scope.

A. 
The people's right to know the process of government decisionmaking and the documents and statistics leading to determinations is basic to our society. Access to such information should not be thwarted by shrouding it with the cloak of secrecy of confidentiality.
B. 
These regulations provide information concerning the procedures by which records may be obtained.
C. 
Personnel shall furnish to the public the information and records required by the Freedom of Information Law, as well as records otherwise available by law.
D. 
Any conflicts among laws governing public access to records shall be construed in favor of the widest possible availability of public records.

§ 58-9 Designation of records access officer.

A. 
The Town of Delaware Town Board is responsible for ensuring compliance with the regulations herein and designates the Town Clerk and, in his/her absence, the Deputy Town Clerk, who shall be responsible for ensuring appropriate agency response to public requests for access to records. The designation of a records access officer shall not be construed to prohibit officials who have in the past been authorized to make records or information available to the public from continuing to do so.
B. 
The records access officer shall ensure that agency personnel:
(1) 
Assist the requester in identifying requested records, if necessary.
(2) 
Contact persons seeking records when a request is voluminous or when locating the records involves substantial effort, so that personnel may ascertain the nature of records of primary interest and attempt to reasonably reduce the volume of records requested.
(3) 
Upon locating the records, take one of the following actions:
(a) 
Make records available for inspection; or
(b) 
Deny access to the records in whole or in part and explain in writing the reasons therefor.
(4) 
Upon request for copies of records:
(a) 
Make a copy available upon payment or offer to pay established fees, if any, in accordance with § 58-14; or
(b) 
Permit the requester to copy those records.
(5) 
Upon request, certify that a record is a true copy.
(6) 
Upon failure to locate records, certify that:
(a) 
The Town of Delaware is not the custodian for such records; or
(b) 
The records of which the Town of Delaware is a custodian cannot be found after diligent search.

§ 58-10 Location of records.

Records shall be available for public inspection and copying at the office of the Town Clerk, 104 Main Street, Hortonville, New York 12745.

§ 58-11 Hours for public inspection.

Requests for public access to records shall be accepted and records produced during regular office hours.

§ 58-12 Requests for public access to records.

A. 
A written request may be required, but oral requests may be accepted when records are readily available.
B. 
If records are maintained on the Internet, the requester shall be informed that the records are accessible via the Internet and/or in printed form.
C. 
A response shall be given regarding any request reasonably describing the record or records sought within five business days of receipt of a request.
D. 
A request shall reasonably describe the records sought. Whenever possible, a person requesting records should supply information regarding dates, file designations or other information that may help to describe the records sought.
E. 
If the records access officer does not provide or deny access to the records sought within five business days of receipt of a request, he or she shall furnish a written acknowledgement of receipt of the request and a statement of approximate date when the request will be granted. Said date shall be reasonable under the circumstances of the request and shall not be more than 20 business days after the date of the acknowledgment. If circumstances prevent disclosure within that time, the officer shall provide a statement in writing within 20 business days specifying the reason for the inability to provide the material and a reasonable date when the request will be granted in whole or in part.
F. 
A failure to comply with the time limitations described herein shall constitute a denial of a request that may be appealed.

§ 58-13 Denial of access to records.

A. 
Denial of access to records shall be in writing stating the reason therefor and advising the requester of the right to appeal to the individual or body established to determine appeals, who shall be identified by name, title, business address and business phone number.
B. 
If requested records are not provided promptly, as required in § 58-12 of these regulations, such failure shall also be deemed a denial of access.
C. 
The Town of Delaware Town Board shall determine appeals regarding denial of access to records under the Freedom of Information Law. Such appeals shall be made within 30 days of a denial.
D. 
The time for deciding an appeal by the individual or body designated to determine appeals shall commence upon receipt of a written appeal identifying:
(1) 
The date of the appeal;
(2) 
The date and location of the original request for records;
(3) 
A description of the records that were denied; and
(4) 
The name and return address of the requestor.
E. 
A failure to determine an appeal within 10 business days of its receipt by granting access to the records sought or fully explaining the reasons for further denial in writing shall constitute a denial of the appeal.
F. 
The person or body designated to determine appeals shall transmit to the Committee on Open Government copies of all appeals upon receipt of appeals. Such copies shall be addressed to the Committee on Open Government, Department of State, One Commerce Plaza, 99 Washington Avenue, Suite 650, Albany, New York 12231.
G. 
The Town Board shall inform the appellant and the Committee on Open Government of its determination in writing within 10 business days of receipt of an appeal.

§ 58-14 Fees.

A. 
There shall be no fee charged for:
(1) 
Inspection of records;
(2) 
Search for records; or
(3) 
Any certification pursuant to this article.
B. 
Copies may be provided without charging a fee.
C. 
Fees for copies may be charged, provided that:
(1) 
The fee for copying records shall not exceed $0.25 per page for photocopies not exceeding nine inches by 14 inches;
(2) 
The fee for photocopies of records in excess of nine inches by 14 inches shall not exceed the actual cost of reproduction; or
(3) 
An agency has the authority to redact portions of a paper record and does so prior to disclosure of the record by making a photocopy from which the proper redactions are made.
D. 
The fee an agency may charge for a copy of any other record is based on the actual cost of reproduction and may include only the following:
(1) 
An amount equal to the hourly salary attributed to the lowest paid employee who has the necessary skill required to prepare a copy of the requested record, but only when more than two hours of the employee's time is necessary to do so; and
(2) 
The actual cost of the storage devices or media provided to the person making the request in complying with such request; or
(3) 
The actual cost to the agency of engaging an outside professional service to prepare a copy of a record, but only when an agency's information technology equipment is inadequate to prepare a copy, and if such service is used to prepare the copy.
E. 
An agency shall inform a person requesting a record of the estimated cost of preparing a copy of the record if more than two hours of an agency employee's time is needed or if it is necessary to retain an outside professional service to prepare a copy of the record.
F. 
An agency may require that the fee for copying or reproducing a record be paid in advance of the preparation of such copy.
G. 
An agency may waive a fee in whole or in part when making copies of records available.