[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of East Fishkill as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 7-10-1975 by L.L. No. 5-1975]
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 or confidentiality.
These regulations provide information concerning the procedures by which records may be obtained.
Personnel shall furnish to the public the information and records required by the Freedom of Information Law and those which were furnished to the public prior to its enactment.
The Supervisor of the Town of East Fishkill is responsible for ensuring compliance with the regulations herein and designates the following persons as records access officers in their respective areas of responsibility:
Receiver of Taxes.
Secretary to the Supervisor.
Secretary to the Highway Superintendent.
Secretary to the Planning Board.
Secretary to the Zoning Board of Appeals.
Clerk to the Justices.
Clerk to the Assessor.
Clerk to the Building and Zoning Administrator.
Clerk to the Police.
Chairman of Recreation Commission.
Chairman of Environmental Conservation Commission.
Dog Control Officer.
Records access officers are responsible for ensuring appropriate agency response to public requests for access to records. However, the public shall not be denied access to records through officials who have in the past been authorized to make records of information available. Record access officers shall assure that personnel:
Maintain an up-to-date subject matter list.
Assist the requester in identifying requested records, if necessary.
Upon request, certify that a transcript is a true copy of records copied.
The Supervisor is designated the fiscal officer, who shall certify the payroll and respond to requests, in accordance with § 40-6B, for an itemized record setting forth the name, address, title and salary of every officer or employee of the agency.
Records shall be available for public inspection and copying at the Town of East Fishkill Office Building, Route 376, Hopewell Junction, New York.
Requests for public access to records shall be accepted and records produced during all hours regularly open for business. These hours are 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Where a request for records is required, such request may be oral or in writing. However, written requests shall not be required for records that have been customarily available without written request.
Time periods for response.
Except under extraordinary circumstances, officials shall respond to a request for records no more than five business days after receipt of the request, whether the request is oral or in writing.
If, because of extraordinary circumstances, more than five business days are required to respond to a request, receipt of the request shall be acknowledged within five business days after the request is received. The acknowledgment shall state the reason for delay and estimate the date when a reply will be made.
A request for access to records should be sufficiently detailed to identify the records. Where possible, the requester should supply information regarding dates, titles, file designations or other information which may help identify the records. However, a request for any or all records falling within a specific category conforms to the standard that records be identifiable.
A current list, by subject matter, of all records produced, filed or first kept or promulgated after September 1, 1974, shall be available for public inspection and copying. The list shall be sufficiently detailed to permit the requester to identify the file category sought.
The subject matter list shall be updated periodically, and the date of the most recent updating shall appear on the first page. The updating of the subject matter list shall not be less than semiannual.
No records may be removed by the requester from the office where the record is located without the permission of the Supervisor.
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 hear appeals.
If requested records are not provided promptly, as required in § 40-6B of these regulations, such failure shall also be deemed a denial of access.
The Town Board shall hear appeals for denial of access to records under the Freedom of Information Law.
The time for deciding an appeal by the individual or body designated to hear appeals shall commence upon receipt of written appeal identifying:
The date of the appeal.
The date and location of the requests for records.
The records to which the requester was denied access.
Whether the denial of access was in writing or was by failure to provide records promptly as required by § 40-6B.
The name and return address of the requester.
The individual or body designated to hear appeals shall inform the requester of its decision in writing within seven business days of receipt of an appeal.
A notice containing the job title or name and business address of the records access officers and fiscal officer; the name, job title, business address and telephone number of the appeal person or persons or body; and the location where records can be seen or copied, shall be posted in a conspicuous location wherever records are kept and/or published in a local newspaper of general circulation.
[Adopted at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I)]
The Records Retention and Disposition Schedule MU-1, issued pursuant to Article 57-A of the Arts and Cultural Affairs Law and containing legal minimum retention periods for municipal government records, is hereby adopted for use by all municipal officers in disposing of municipal government records listed therein.
In accordance with Article 57-A:
Only those records will be disposed of that are described in Records Retention and Disposition Schedule MU-1 after they have met the minimum retention period prescribed therein.
Only those records will be disposed of that do not have sufficient administrative, fiscal, legal or historical value to merit retention beyond established time periods.