Right to Know (Open Records)
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|Open Records Officer||(215) 949-9000|
Open Records Policy
Requesters can fill out a Right-to-Know form directed to the Open Records Officer by fax, electronic mail, regular mail or in person. The Falls Township Municipal building is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Please retain a copy of your request as it will be necessary if you should need to file an appeal with the Office of Open Records. If you do not have a copy of your request, your appeal will be dismissed as insufficient. When filling out the request, please be as specific and concise as possible. Make sure you are seeking records, not asking questions. The law governs the release of records, not answering questions. Not all records are public records. Please refer toSection 708 – Exceptions for Public Records.
The Township upon receipt of a request shall make a good faith effort to determine if the record requested is a public record and whether the Township has possession, custody or control of the identified record and to respond as promptly as possible under the circumstances existing at the time of the request. Please refer to Section 901 – General Rule.
The Township has five business days to respond to your request. The clock starts the day after the request was received during regular business hours. The Township will respond in writing to: 1) grant the request, 2) deny the request (citing the legal basis for denial/partial denial) or 3) invoke a 30-day extension for certain reasons. Please refer to Section 902 – Extension of Time. If the Township does not respond to your request in the allotted time, the request is deemed denied, and you have the right to file an appeal with the Office of Open Records.
Paper copies will be $0.25 cents per page. If mailing is requested, the actual cost of postage will be charged. If it is determined that the estimated fees will exceed $100.00, then the Township will require prepayment. Please refer to Section 1307 – Fee Limitations.
If the Township denies a record, or a portion of a record, the requester can file an appeal with the Office of Open Records within 15 business days of the mailing date of the Township’s response. Appeals should be sent to the Office of Open Records, Commonwealth Keystone Building, 400 North Street, 4th Floor, Harrisburg, PA 17120-0225. They may also be submitted via facsimile to 717-425-5343 or via email to email@example.com as a Microsoft Word or PDF attachment.
All appeals must be in writing and shall include the following information: A copy of the RTK request, a copy of the Township’s response (or a written statement that the request was deemed denied meaning the Township didn’t respond at all), state the grounds they assert this is a public record and address any ground stated by the Township.
Open Records Contact
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
Office of Open Records
Commonwealth Keystone Building
400 North Street, 4th Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17120-0225