A new in-person training will be offered beginning May 30 at the State Archives! In this training we will discuss how various Gmail functions and tools can be used to manage email in accordance with retention schedules and other internal policies or rules. This training will be particularly helpful for records officers as well as agency management whose email correspondence should often be kept according to various retention periods.
This training is specific to Gmail which is why it is directed to state employees, but anyone is invited to attend!
Register at: http://archives.state.ut.us/cgi-bin/traininglist.cgi and select “Basic Records Management III”
See you there!
RIM Event 2013
Thanks to everyone who attended the RIM Event at the Archives last Thursday. A special thanks to the speakers — David Fleming, Jerrianne Kolby, Alan Barnett, Randy Silverman, and Rebekkah Shaw — for sharing their knowledge and experience with us.
As promised, below are the presentations from the event:
Mark your calenders for Friday, October 4th for the Electronic Records Conference. More details about the event will be posted on the blog over the coming weeks and months.
When the Utah Public Notice Website (UPNW) was launched in 2008, government agencies were required to post on the site only notices and meeting agenda prior to open and public meetings. The requirement of what “public information” must be posted has been expanded.
Website enhancements now permit public bodies to attach approved minutes, audio recordings, and other materials to the original public notice posted on the UPN Website in compliance with 2013 amendments to the Open and Public Meetings Act and the Utah Technology Governance Act. These new provisions go into effect May 14, 2013.
State law now requires a state public body (defined as “an administrative, advisory, executive, or legislative body of the state”) to post “minutes that have been approved by the public body that held the open meeting” within three business days after approving the written minutes. A copy of the approved minutes must also be available at the public body’s primary office. Prior to approval, state public bodies are required to make the pending minutes (draft form) available to the public “within 30 days after holding the open meeting that is the subject of the pending minutes.” Pending or draft minutes are NOT required to be posted, only made available to the public.
Supported file formats for attachments include PDF – Portable Document Format | .DOC – Word Document | .DOCX – 2007/2010 Word Document | .WPD – Word Perfect Document | .RTF – Rich Text Format | .XLS – Excel Spreadsheet | .XLSX – Excel Spreadsheet | .ZIP – Compressed file | .DOCM – Open XML Formatted file.
In addition, a copy of any public materials distributed at the open meeting must also be posted to the website and be available for inspection in the agency office.
Audio recordings made during an open meeting must be made available via the website within three business days either by posting them as an attachment or by linking to a website where they are posted. The recording is to be “a complete and unedited record of all open portions of the meeting from the commencement of the meeting through adjournment of the meeting; and be properly labeled or identified with the date, time, and place of the meeting.” The site supports audio file attachments in .MP3, .wav, and FTR Gold formats. The maximum file size is 200 MB.
The provisions for posting approved minutes and handouts on the UPNW also apply to a specified local public body (defined as “a legislative body of a county, city, or town”). Audio recordings must be available in the office but are not required to be posted on the website.
A city of the fifth class (population between 1,000 and 10,000) or a town (population under 1,000) is encouraged to comply with the posting of minutes and public materials but is not required to comply until January 1, 2015.
For questions about the Utah Public Notice Website, please contact Glen Fairclough, firstname.lastname@example.org, 801-531-3841.
RIM Building Blocks:
Identifying and Preserving Essential Records
Thursday, April 25, 2013
9:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m.
Registration is still open for the Archives’ records and information management event. The theme for the event is RIM Building Blocks: Identifying and Preserving Essential Records. The presentation schedule and speaker information is listed below. To register visit http://archives.state.ut.us/cgi-bin/traininglist.cgi. Seating for this event is limited but there are still a few spaces available.
Schedule and Speakers
9:00 a.m. “Tactics vs. Strategy: From Records & Information Management to Information Governance” by David M. Fleming, CRM, VP & Corporate Records Manager for Zions Bancorporation
10:00 a.m. “Identifying Essential Records” by Jerrianne Kolby, Special Projects Manager for Utah Department of Public Safety. Division of Emergency Management
Jerrianne Kolby has been in emergency management for over 30 years and has responded and participated in over 30 major disasters all over the country. She has served in East St Louis, Saipan, and worked with the Havasupai Tribe in the bottom of the Grand Canyon.
11:00 a.m. “Format Preservation” by Alan Barnett, Utah State Archives
Alan Barnett has worked at the Utah State Archives for the past 10 years. He has worked in various capacities, including records analyst, processor, and he is currently the reference manager. Alan is also the Archives’ circuit rider and he works with cities and towns throughout the state to help them preserve their records. Alan is passionate about historic records and is a great resource to the state.
12:00 p.m. “Holes in History” by Lorianne Ouderkirk, Record Analysts for State Archives
Lorianne Ouderkirk has worked with the Utah State Archives since March 2012, first as a volunteer and now as records analyst. Her current responsibilities include working with local government agencies, providing statewide training in records management, and acting as co-administrator of records management website. She holds a BA in English from Brigham Young University and a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from San Jose State University.
1:00 p.m. “Silverman’s Nine Circles of Disaster Mitigation” by Randy Silverman, Preservation Librarian for University of Utah Marriott Library
Randy Silverman has served as Preservation Librarian at the University of Utah’s Marriott Library since 1993, and has worked in the field of book conservation since 1978. He teaches preservation as adjunct faculty for University of Arizona and Emporia State University and teaches disaster preparedness workshops for the Western States & Territories Preservation Assistance Service in three Western states. He consults broadly, has 80 professional publications, received the Utah Humanities Council’s “Human Ties Award” in 2007, and the American Library Association’s Banks/Harris award in 2013.
2:00 p.m. “Devloping a R.E.A.P Plan” by”Devloping a R.E.A.P Plan” by Rebekkah Shaw and Lorianne Ouderkirk, Record Analysts for State Archives
Rebekkah Shaw volunteered at the Archives after completing her bachelors in history at Utah State University in 2008. She joined the Archives staff in 2010 to process over 144,000 microfiche. When the project was completed she moved to the Micrographics section to digitize microforms. Rebekkah joined the record analyst section in February this year. Her current project is updating the general retention schedules and coordinating with Micrographics.
The opening statement in the GRAMA section on fees states that:
The law recognizes that records requests can be time consuming and take employees away from their regular responsibilities. It therefore provides for government to recoup the actual cost of providing records in response to GRAMA requests.
How is actual cost determined?
The law specifically identifies things for which fees can be assessed when a governmental entity compiles a record in a form other than it normally maintains:
Since these charges are basically for labor to complete records related tasks, the law identifies how much can be charged per hour for work done:
Even though a person with a higher salary may have completed the work, a governmental entity can still charge only at the hourly rate of the lowest paid employee who would be capable of doing the work. The law does not say whether the fee should be based on net or gross salary. Actual cost can also include copy costs or the cost of any materials used to fill the request.
The law specifically identifies some things that cannot be considered when calculating actual cost and for which the governmental entity cannot charge. Fees cannot be charged for allowing someone to view a public record. Fees cannot be charged for reviewing records to determine whether or not they are subject to disclosure.
When should fees be waived?
The law invites governmental entities to waive fees for GRAMA requests in certain circumstances:
The language in this statute is permissive and not mandatory. Determining to waive fees is an expression of public good will. When a fee waiver is requested for the reason that releasing the record primarily benefits the public rather than an individual, a governmental entity should consider how the public will be benefited. Presumably, requests from journalists or the media are in the public interest.
When a governmental entity decides not to waive fees, offering to provide records at a reduced cost may also be an option.
Does GRAMA provide additional guidelines on fees?
GRAMA includes a few provisions designed to protect governmental entities from abuse:
A governmental entity may require prepayment of fees for a large request; however it is good practice to at least notify the requester of the anticipated cost. Requesters may have no idea how much time it will take to fill a records request and, hence, no idea how much it will cost. Notification of anticipated cost before beginning compilation will allow the requester to confirm intent to pay or to modify or cancel a request if the cost is greater than anticipated. It will help prevent work being done to fill a GRAMA request that is not then purchased.
GRAMA has no provisions to protect the requester from unexpected fees, however, it does provide certain additional rights in respect to obtaining access to records.
Who authorizes fees?
Once more the opening statement in the fees section of GRAMA states:
It is important that fees for GRAMA requests are consistently defined so that costs will be predictable for both requesters and responders. In fact, all governmental entities are required to adopt fee schedules and to have them approved by a legislative or governing body:
What recourse is available when fees are in dispute?
In spite of the best intentions on everyone’s part, misunderstandings or misaligned expectations can arise over fee issues. GRAMA has provided recourse for the resolution of disputes over fees:
In twenty years the State Records Committee has heard thirteen appeals involving fee issues. Although the committee has on occasion ordered that records be provided without charge, its decisions generally have supported that granting fee waivers in the suggested instances is permissive but not mandatory. Even though there is no statutory requirement to provide the requester with prior notice of an amount, the committee has ruled on both sides of the dilemma of unexpected charges. The committee has also ruled on both sides of the issue of charging for time spent on segregation. In one instance the committee upheld a governmental entity’s right to charge for time spent in this way. In another instance, the committee determined that segregation is part of determining whether a record is subject to disclosure and is therefore something for which a governmental entity may not charge a fee. (See summary of fee waiver hearings)
The state government records ombudsman is another resource to help with disputes over fees. Although the ombudsman does not have authority to make determinations, she can offer suggestions for resolution and facilitate conversation. The ombudsman can help with mediation which is designed to find a compromise solution which is agreeable to everyone.
Governmental entities can help prevent conflicts over fees by reviewing and updating adopted fee schedules to make sure they are equitable and current. Routinely notifying requesters of the anticipated cost before beginning to compile records in response to a request will enable the governmental entity and the requester to come to agreement about fees before time is unnecessarily spent on responding to requests.
Records and Information Management Event
Thursday, April 25, 2013
In recognition of Records and Information Management Month, the Utah State Archives will host a series of presentations on Thursday, April 25th focusing on practical tools and tips for records preservation and management. The sessions will be presented by local professionals and State Archives’ employees. The schedule will be as follows:
9:00 – 9:50 a.m.
“Tactics vs. Strategy: From Records & Information Management to Information Governance” by David M. Fleming, CRM, VP & Corporate Records Manager for Zions Bancorporation
“Identifying Essential Records” by Jerrianne Kolby, Special Projects Program
Manager for Utah Department of Public Safety. Division of Emergency Management
“Silverman’s Nine Circles of Disaster Mitigation” by Randy Silverman, Preservation Librarian for University of Utah Marriott Library
“Holes in History” by Lorianne Ouderkirk, Records Analyst for State Archives
“Format Preservation” by State Archives
“Developing a R.E.A.P Plan” by Rebekkah Shaw and Lorianne Ouderkirk, Records Analysts for State Archives
The event is free and open to all government employees and the public. Registration is required and available at the following link: http://archives.state.ut.us/cgi-bin/traininglist.cgi. Those wishing to attend may register for the entire event or selected sessions. Lunch will be served during the Noon presentation, registration for this session is considered an RSVP.