RCW 42.56.070(1) requires each agency to make available for inspection and copying nonexempt "public records" in accordance with published rules. The Public Records Act ("PRA"), at RCW 42.56.010(3), defines "public record" to include any "writing containing information relating to the conduct of government or the performance of any governmental or proprietary function prepared, owned, used, or retained" by the agency regardless of physical form or characteristics, and specifically excludes records that are not otherwise required to be retained by the agency. RCW 42.56.070(2) requires each agency to set forth "for informational purposes" every law, in addition to the Public Records Act, that exempts or prohibits the disclosure of public records held by that agency.
Also, a public record must be an identifiable record. A request for "all or substantially all records" prepared, owned, used, or retained by the City is not a valid request for identifiable records. However, a request for all records regarding a particular topic or containing a particular keyword or name would qualify as a valid request for identifiable records.
Who is the Public Records Officer?
The public records officer for the City of Dayton is Deb Hays, City Clerk-Treasurer. The public records office is located at Dayton City Hall, 111 S. 1st Street, Dayton, WA 99328.
Where do I submit my request?
If you would like to request public records that are not available on this website, you may complete a public record request form and submit it via mail or in-person at:
Public Records Office: Dayton City Clerk
City of Dayton
111 S. 1st Street
Dayton, WA 99328 ; or
By fax: 509.382.2539;
By Telephone: 509.382.2361. Be sure to state that you are verbally making public records request.
How long before I can expect a response from the City?
City of Dayton has five (5) business days in which to respond to your request by:
- Providing an inspection and/or copy(s) of the information requested; or
- Written response acknowledging the receipt of the request and a reasonable estimate of the time in which a record will be made available; or
- Denial of the request. If said request is denied, a written statement will accompany the denial setting out specific reasons for the denial as prescribed by RCW 42.17.310(1).
When can I inspect the records?
Once public records are available for inspection and copying, they shall be made available to the requestor during normal business hours of the City, 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday - Thursday, excluding legal holidays. Records may only be inspected on site.
Also, because the City posts certain records on their website, a requestor is encouraged to peruse and view documents available at www.daytonwa.com prior to submitting a public records request.
How much will the City charge for copies of the public records?
The City will charge the requestor for photocopies or electronically produced copies of public records in accordance with the charges set forth in RCW 42.56.120(2).
If a request requires the use of a commercial copy service, including but not limited to large-copy projects, color copies, and over-sized copies, the costs for copies will be the actual cost of the copies charged by such outside vendor.
You may be required to pay a deposit of up to 10 percent of the estimated costs of copying the records selected or requested, including customized service charges. The public records officer or designee may also require payment in full of the remainder of the copying costs before providing all the records, after deducting any deposit paid.
The cost of providing electronic copies of records on a CD-ROM disc will be the actual cost. If electronically produced copies are being provided by email, cost for the records will be in accordance with RCW 42.56.120.
You may be charged actual costs of mailing, including the cost of a shipping container and postage; and the actual cost of long distance fax transmission.
Payment for the costs of records may be made by cash, check, or money order made payable to the City of Dayton.
The requestor may challenge the City's fee estimate when the requestor believes the city has not made a "reasonable estimate of the charges to produce the copies of records" by seeking judicial review of the City's action by filing a motion in Columbia County superior court pursuant to the provisions of RCW 42.56.550.
The City of Dayton has the discretion to waive charges for photocopies or electronically produced copies of public records. The City may also enter into a contract, memorandum of understanding, or other agreement with a requestor that provides an alternative fee arrangement to the charges authorized in RCW 42.56.120, or in response to a voluminous or frequently occurring request.
What do I do if I want to review a denial of public records?
Any person who objects to the initial denial or partial denial of a records request may petition in writing (including email) to the public records officer for a review of that decision. The petition shall include a copy of, or reasonably identify, the written statement by the public records officer or designee denying the request.
The public records officer shall promptly provide the petition and any other relevant information to the city attorney with a copy to the Mayor. The city attorney will consider the petition and either affirm or reverse the denial within two business days following the city of Dayton's receipt of the petition, or within such other time as the city attorney and the requestor mutually agree.
Any person may obtain court review of denials of public records requests pursuant to RCW 42.56.550 at the conclusion of two business days after the initial denial regardless of any internal administrative review.
What if I have additional questions regarding public records?