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Public Record Policy

Public Record Policy of the Butler County, Ohio Recorder's Office

Section 1.

This policy shall govern all requests for public records of the Butler County, Ohio Recorder's Office.

 

 

Section 2.

For purposes of this policy, the term "public record" shall have the meaning given to such term in the Ohio Revised Code 149.43.

 

 

Section 3.

Any "person," including corporations, individuals, and other governmental agencies, may request public records. The requester does not have to be an Ohio resident.

 

 

Section 4.

The Public Records Law (ORC 149.43) generally requires every public office to prepare promptly all public records and make them available for inspection at all reasonable times during regular business hours. The office hours of the Butler County Recorder's Office are 8:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. The office will be closed for all Commissioner approved holidays passed by county resolution.

 

 

Section 5.

Upon request and within a reasonable period of time, a public office or person responsible for public records generally must make copies available at cost. (ORC 149.43 (B)(1).)

 

 

Section 6.

The Butler County Recorder's Office is considered a "Public office". "Records" include any document, device, or item, regardless of physical form or characteristics, including an electronic record as defined in ORC 1306.01, created or received by or coming under the jurisdiction of any public office of the state which serves to document the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, operations, or other activities of the office. (ORC 149.011(A) & (B).)

 

 

Section 7.

Upon request, the Butler County Recorder's Office must make copies available at cost, within a reasonable period of time. The fee for a public record image printed in the Butler County Recorder's Office is 15 cents. Assisted copies, which include public records from books prior to 1987 and written requests, are $2.00 per page. (ORC 317.32) (AG Opinion 2004-033)

 

 

Section 8.

If a public record contains information that is exempt from the duty to permit public inspection or copying, the Butler County Recorder's Office must make available all of the information within the public record that is not exempt. Any redaction that is made to a public record must be plainly visible to the requestor. Currently, the only exempt information contained in the office public records, is some information located in personnel files.

 

 

Section 9.

There is no limit to the number of public record requests or copies that the Butler County Recorder's Office will make available to a single person or entity.

 

 

Section 10.

If a requester makes an ambiguous or overly broad request such that the Recorder's Office cannot reasonably identify what public records are being requested, the public office may deny the request but must provide the requester with an opportunity to revise the request by informing the requester of the manner in which records are maintained by the public office and accessed in the ordinary course of the Recorder's Office duties. The Butler County Recorder's Office does not perform title searches.

 

 

Section 11.

If a request is ultimately denied, in part or in whole, the Recorder's Office must provide the requester with an explanation, including legal authority, setting forth why the request was denied. If the initial request was provided in writing, the explanation also must be provided to the requester in writing.

 

 

Section 12.

The Butler County Recorder's Office may not limit or condition the availability of public records by requiring disclosure of the requester's identity or the intended use of the requested public record.

 

 

Section 13.

The Butler County Recorder's Office may ask a requester to make the request in writing, to ask for the requester's identity, and to inquire about the intended use of the information requested, but only after disclosing to the requester that a written request is not mandatory and that the requester may decline to reveal the requester's identity or intended use.

 

 

Section 14.

If a person chooses to obtain a copy of a public record in accordance with the Public Records Law, the Recorder's Office must permit that person to choose to have the public record duplicated upon paper, upon the same medium upon which the Recorder's Office keeps it, or upon any other medium upon which the Recorder's Office determines that it reasonably can be duplicated as an integral part of the normal operations of the Butler County Recorder's Office.

 

 

Section 15.

If any person chooses to obtain a copy of a public record in accordance with the Public Records Law, the Recorder's Office may require that person to pay in advance the cost involved in providing the copy of the public record in accordance with the choice made by the person seeking the copy as described in the preceding paragraph.

 

 

Section 16.

Upon request, the Recorder's Office must transmit a copy of a public record to any person by United States mail within a reasonable period of time after receiving the request for the copy. The Recorder's Office may require the person making the request to pay in advance the cost of postage and other supplies used in the mailing. The policy for the Recorder's Office to transmit copies of public records by United States mail is as follows:

  • Receive request for copy of public record;
  • Fee must be paid for in advance;
  • The correct fee must be received with the request.  The Butler County Recorder's Office will not return overages in the mail;
  • Postage paid envelope shall accompany the request;
  • Request should be processed within one working day;
  • A computer generated, paid receipt will accompany the public record when being returned to the requestor;
  • If the request is being denied, it will be accompanied by a return letter from the office.

 

 

Section 17.

Deputies in the Butler County Recorder's Office will process public record requests from walk-in customers and mail-in requests. 513-887-3192

All public record requests pertaining to personnel issues will be processed by Karen Young, Administrator. 513-887-3188

All public record requests pertaining to bulk sales, broad requests or genealogy requests will be processed by Denise Goll, Chief Deputy. 513-887-3195

 

 

Section 18.

The Butler County Recorder's Office public record policy is to be posted at all times in the office.

 

 

Section 19.

The Butler County Recorder's Office retention schedule is to be made available at all times.