Acquisition of Public Documents

State legislation revisions caused the Arizona Department of Public Safety to consider the fees required for copies of public records. This is good news because the fees “had not been reviewed in over ten years.” For those involved in criminal defense cases, public records can be a tool in building a case. Read more about the review process below:

For Immediate Release

Phoenix, Ariz. — The Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) will conduct a review of the fees charged to the public for copies of records requested and provided through public records requests.

Title 39 of the Arizona Revised Statutes defines public records and allows governmental agencies to charge a fee for copies of those documents. Although agencies may charge for copies and the personnel time, equipment and materials costs, they may not charge a fee for searching for documents. As provided by law, DPS allows any member of the public to inspect public records without charge.

“DPS set its fee schedule for copies of public records over ten years ago when paper copies were the standard.” says Lt. Colonel Wayde Webb, Assistant Director of the Agency Support Division. “With advances in technology – digital formats and images have drastically reduced the demand for paper copies.” “The review will look at the workflow process for public records requests and will be used as the basis for any fees charged after completion of the study.”

“This is transparent and accountable government in action,” says Colonel Frank Milstead, Director of the Department of Public Safety. “When questions were raised regarding the fees we charge for public records, I directed staff to research the issue.” “We found that the fees being charged had not been reviewed in over ten years.” “Technology and systems have changed during that time that demand this review.”

The Arizona Department of Public Safety is a state-level law enforcement agency whose mission is to protect human life and property by enforcing state laws, deterring criminal activity and providing vital support to the State of Arizona and its citizens.


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