Kansas Open Records Act (KORA)
Kansas Open Records Act (KORA)
It is Geary County Sheriff’s Office policy to refer: (CHRI) Criminal History Record Information check requests, except those that are otherwise authorized by state and federal law to the KBI (Kansas Bureau of Investigation).
Those that are otherwise authorized by state and federal law may submit requests by fax on agency letterhead. Contractors must include waiver of release and $10 by mail.
By law, criminal history record information (CHRI) is not subject to the Kansas Open Records Act (KORA). Kansas CHRI checks are fee-based and may be performed by contacting the Kansas Bureau of Investigation (KBI) Records Management Section: www.kansas.gov/kbi/criminalhistory/
Common Exceptions to KORA
Generally speaking the following types of records – among others – are protected from disclosure pursuant to (KORA):
Criminal investigation records
- Criminal intelligence information
- Laboratory reports and files
- Information that would reveal the identity of an undercover agent or informant
- Records protected by the attorney-client privilege
- Most personnel records
- Records closed by the rules of evidence
- Notes and preliminary drafts
- Medical records
- Records containing information of a personal nature
- Standard arrest reports (SARs) and standard offense reports (SORs)-SARs are not subject to disclosure and only the first page of a SOR may be obtained through the local law enforcement agency that filed the report.
It is the Sheriff’s Offices’s responsibility to:
- Appoint a Freedom of Information Officer (FOIO) to assist in resolving issues related to KORA requests.
- Act on record requests within three business days following their receipt and to provide the requester notice if additional time will be require to locate or compile requested records.
- Estimate the charge for providing requested records and obtain advance payment prior to fulfilling the request.
- Redact personal information from an otherwise public record before releasing it, and/or protect from disclosure records covered by KORA exceptions.
- Determine the format (paper, electronic or other media) in which a record will be produced if the record is maintained in an electronic database and/or contains some information that may need to be redacted prior to release.
- Refuse a record request if it places an unreasonable burden on the agency.
It is YOUR right to:
- Inspect or request copies of public records retained by the Sheriff’s Office, which are not exempt from disclosure by a specific law, during the Sheriff’s Office’s regular business hours.
- Be provided an estimate or statement of the reasonable costs the Sheriff’s Office will charge to provide requested records, prior to charges being incurred.
- Receive the records you request, or at least a response to your request, within three business days after it is received by the Sheriff’s Department.
- File a complaint with the Kansas Attorney General’s Office if you feel you are wrongly denied records.
How to obtain records:
Record requests must be in writing and may be delivered in person or by mail to the Sheriff’s Office.
You should identify the record(s) you seek with as much specificity as possible. The Sheriff’s Office has no obligation to create a record that does not already exist. Also, pursuant to our record retention schedule, a record that previously existed may have since been destroyed, and the Sheriff’s Office is not required by law to recreate it.
K.S.A. 45-230 prohibits the use of names and addresses derived from public records for certain commercial purposes. Violation of this law can result in a civil penalty of as much as $500 per incident.
For Additional Info:
A complete copy of the KORA may be found by visiting: http://www.kslegislature.org, then select “Statutes”. The KORA begins at K.S.A. 45-215.
The Kansas Attorney General’s Office maintains an outline regarding KORA, as well as frequently asked questions on the Act, on its website, at www.ksag.org.