The Washington State Public Records Act, RCW 42.56, supports the public’s right to be informed about what their government is doing. A public record is existing information contained in writing, data, or other type of records.
The law requires that the public records requested are “identifiable.” A public records request must include enough specific description so the district can locate the record being requested. For example, if you are requesting the district budget, be sure to state for which year you want the budget and if you want the entire document or a summary.
The law lists certain public records that do not have to be disclosed. These exemptions are intended to prevent unreasonable invasions of personal privacy or the use of public records for personal or commercial gain. If certain information contained in a document is exempt, it will be redacted (blacked out) from the document, but you will still be provided a copy of the document.
While the District makes every effort to respond to all inquiries, it should be noted that general questions are not public disclosure requests. Public disclosure requests apply to existing documents.
To submit a request, complete the Public Records Request Form.
The law requires that within five (5) business days from receiving the request, the public agency will: (see note below in red)
- provide you the records requested; or
- provide a reasonable estimate of when the records will be available when the records are not readily available because of (1) the time necessary to gather them, (2) determine whether they are exempt, (3) redact any exempt information, (4) contact people or other entities to let them know the information is being released, and/or (5) to gain clarification of the request; or
- deny the request and give the legal reason for the denial.
If the District does not respond in writing within five business days of receipt of the request for disclosure, the requester should contact the Public Records Officer at 360-575-7016 to determine the reason for the failure to respond. Due to Covid-19, Governor Inslee issued an order suspending the five-day response requirement until further notice. The district will provide a 5-day response once the school closure ends. Also, the district will resume the option to make records available for public inspection and copying once the closure ends.
Policy 4040 outlines the cost for requested records. Please note there is no charge for records inspected in-person. When a requester asks for copies of all or a portion of the records requested, however, the District will assess the following costs:
The District has determined that calculating the actual per-page cost or other costs charged for providing photocopies of public records would be unduly burdensome. Therefore, the District will charge 15 cents per page for photocopies of public records.
The cost for providing electronic records is as follows:
- Ten cents per page for public records scanned into an electronic format or for the use of District equipment to scan the records;
- Five cents per each four electronic files or attachment uploaded to email, cloud-based data storage service, or other means of electronic delivery;
- Ten cents per gigabyte for the transmission of public records in an electronic format or for the use of District equipment to send the records electronically; and
- The actual cost of any digital storage media or device provided by the District, the actual cost of any container or envelope used to mail the copies to the requestor, and the actual postage or delivery charge.
Alternatively, if the District determines and documents that the fees allowed under this procedure are clearly equal to, or more, than two dollars, the District may instead charge a flat fee of two dollars to provide the records. If the District charges a flat fee for the first installment, the District will not charge an additional flat fee or a per page fee for any subsequent installments.