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  • Dean Smith

ICU Does Not Overlook the Opportunity to Utilize OPRA Requests

OPRA requests are one of the best tools the public has to obtain government information on a state, county, or municipal level. This New Jersey law is often overlooked as a means to collect public information, but the New Jersey Open Public Records Act mandates that the public agency produces the record requested within seven business days of receiving the request.

We can request records from specific departments (then an agency within that department) such as:


Agriculture


Banking and insurance


Children and families


Civil service commission


Commissions and agencies


Community affairs


Corrections


Education


Environmental protection


Office of Governor


Health


Human Services


Labor


Law and public safety


Military and veterans affairs


State


Transportation


Treasury


And many more!

It is important to remember that some records are exempt from disclosure. Exempt records are listed below:


Criminal Investigation Records


Records relating to an ongoing investigation


Personnel/pension records (with some exceptions)


Inter- or intra-agency advisory


Consultative or deliberative material (drafts of documents)


Records protected by court order


Records protected by attorney-client privilege


Job applicant records


Fingerprint cards


Illegitimacy records


Records that would substantially impair the state’s ability to defend against sabotage or terrorism


Legislative records


Medical examiner records


Victims’ records


Trade secrets and proprietary commercial or financial information


Administrative or technical information regarding computer hardware, software and networks which, if disclosed would jeopardize computer security


Emergency or security information or procedures for buildings or facilities which, if disclosed, would jeopardize security of the building or facility or persons therein


Security measures and surveillance techniques which, if disclosed, would create a risk to the safety or persons, property, electronic data or software


Information which, if disclosed, would give an advantage to competitors or bidders.


Information generated by or on behalf of public employers or public employees in connection with:


Any sexual harassment complain filed with a public employer


Any grievance filed by or against an individual


Collective negotiations including documents and statement of strategy o0r negotiating position



Information which is a communication between a public agency and its insurance carrier, administrative service organization or risk management offic


Certificate of honorable discharge issued by the US government filed with a public agency


Personal identifying information (social security numbers, credit card numbers, unlisted telephone numbers, drivers’ license numbers)


Certain records of higher education institutions (academic research records, test questions/scoring keys/etc)


Biotechnology trade secrets


Limitations to convicts – personal information pertaining to the person’s victim or the victim’s family, including but not limited to a victim’s home address, home telephone number, work or school address, work telephone number, social security account number, medical history or any other identifying information


Public defender records that relate to the handling of any case


Privacy Interest – “a public agency has a responsibility and an obligation to safeguard from public access a citizen’s personal information with which it has been entrusted when disclosure thereof would violate the citizen’s reasonable expectation of privacy.”

Posted in News | Tagged government, opra, records, requests

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