The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is a United States federal law that grants the public access to information possessed by government agencies. Upon written request, U.S. government agencies are required to release information unless it falls under one of nine exemptions listed in the Act.
Every record that is made or received by a government entity or employee is presumed to be a public record unless a specific statutory exemption permits or requires it to be withheld in whole or in part.
A public records request is a request to either inspect, copy or both, public records. There is no requirement that the request be made in person or in writing, or be in any particular form. The person making the request is not required to identify himself/herself, or to provide information about the reason for the request or how the records will be used. The request must be clear enough to enable the Town/City to conduct a meaningful search. The Town/City may ask questions about the request in order to respond to the request fully and in a timely manner. The State acknowledges that access to information is a fundamental and necessary right of every citizen.