FOIA ICMCF Operational Procedures

 

POLICY                     ICMCF Operational Procedures-Freedom of Information Act 

REFERENCE             Administration 

SUPERSEDES           New 

EFFECTIVE DATE    07/01/15

 

OBJECTIVE:              These Operational procedures have been developed to implement the  Ingham County Medical Care Facility (ICMCF) FOIA Procedures and                                           Guidelines adopted by the Ingham County’s Department of Human Services Board.

 

I.
DEFINITIONS:

 

A.
FOIA: The Michigan
Freedom of Information Act, codified at MCLA 15.321 etseq., as amended.

 

B.
FOIA
Coordinator:
The
FOIA Coordinator, pursuant to MCL 15.236(1), is the Facility’s Administrator. As used in this policy, the term “FOIA Coordinator” shall mean the Chairperson
of the Ingham County Department of Human Services, or the Chairperson’s designee under MCL 15.236(3).

 

C.
Public
Body:
Public Body shall include, but not be limited to, thefollowing:

 

1.                 Ingham County Medical Care Facility 

2.                 Ingham County Department of Human Services Board Members.

 

D.          Public Record: A writing prepared, owned, used, in the possession of, or retainedbya Public Body in the performance of an official function, from the time it screated.

 

Exception:
computer software.

 

E.          Redaction: Editing of a public record by deletion, masking or separation toremove exempt material from nonexemptmaterial.

 

F.          Requesting Person: An individual, corporation, limited liabilitycompany, partnership, firm, organization, association, governmental entity, or other legalentity.

 

G.         Writing: The written word, a photocopy, photograph, map, microfilm,sound, symbol, computer file, e-mail or digitally scannedimage.

 

II.
FOIA COORDINATORS:

 

A.     Designations: The statutory Ingham
County Medical Care Facility
FOIA Coordinator, being the Chairperson of the Ingham
County Department of Human Services Board
may, pursuant to MCL
15.236(3), designate another individual to act on his or her behalf in
accepting and processing requests for the public body’s public records, and in
approving a denial of requests under FOIA.

 

        

B.     Responsibilities: The FOIA
Coordinatorshall be responsible for acceptingand processing requests for the
Public Body’s public records, and shallbe responsible for granting or denying
public records whereappropriate
.

 

1.
Training: The FOIA
Coordinator shall receive training in the applicationof FOIA and the use of the
required form packet, and shall be advisedof amendments to FOIA as necessary. The
FOIA Coordinator shall seekthe advice of legal counsel, when questions of legal
interpretationarise.

 

2.
Form Packet: The FOIA
Coordinator shall use the FOIA Forms adopted with the FOIA Procedures and
Guidelines to process and respond torequests.

 

3.
Filed Requests: The FOIA
Coordinator shall keep all FOIA requests,responses and appeals on file for no
less than one (1) year from the date of finalresponse or written decision on
appeal, whichever islater.

 

4.
Monitoring: The FOIA
Coordinator shall ensure that any FOIA requestshe/shereceive by electronic
device or system are monitored and responded toby a responsible person when
theFOIA Coordinatorwill not have access tosaid device or system for more than
one (1) businessday.

 

III.     PROCEDURES:

 

A.
Receive
Request: 
The requesting person shall provide the Public Body witha
written request that describes a public record sufficiently to enable the
PublicBody’s FOIA Coordinator to find it. The written request may be
transmitted byfacsimile, electronic mail or other electronic means, but if it
is transmitted by such means, itwill be considered received by the Public Body
one (1) business day after thetransmission is made.

 

B.
Forward Request
to FOIA Coordinators:
All ICMCF officers and employeeswhoreceive a FOIA
request shall note the date of receipt on the request and forwardit within one
(1) business day to the FOIA Coordinator. The FOIA Coordinator will send a copy
of the request, within one (1) business dayto applicable Department Head.

 

C.
Review Request: After receiving
a request and within sufficient time toensure compliance with the FOIA response
requirements, the FOIA Coordinator, shall:

 

1.       Determine
if there is an existing public record that satisfies therequest.

 

2.       Determine
if any requested records, in whole or in part, are available on
ICMCF’s website.

 

3.        Determine if any requested records, in
whole or in part, are subject todenial or exempt from disclosure. A requested
record which is subject to denialor exempt from disclosure, in whole or in
part, shall not be disclosedunless approved by
ICMCF’s Counsel.

 

D.
Determine if Request Contains
Grounds for Denial:

 

1.         A FOIA request shall
be denied if the requesting person is serving a sentenceofimprisonment in a
local, state or federal correctionalfacility.

 

2.         A FOIA request shall
be denied if the requesting person does not describe apublic record
sufficiently to enable the Public Body to find it.

 

3.         A FOIA request shall
be denied if it requires the Public Body to create a newpublic record or make a
compilation, summary or report ofinformation.

 

E.
Examine
Request for Exemptions:
The requested
public records shall be reviewed as to whether, in whole or in part, theyare
exemptfrom disclosure, and whether any portions of the records are subject to
redactions prior to disclosure.Any questions concerning the generallegal
parameters of an exemption, redactions,or applicability in a particular
situation, shouldbe directed to ICMCF’s Counsel or the FOIA Coordinator.

 

F.
Redaction: If a public record contains
both exempt and nonexempt material,theFOIA Coordinator or
designee shall edit
the record by deletion, masking or separationof the exempt from the nonexempt
material, and shall then providethe nonexempt material to the requesting
person. The FOIA Coordinatorshall generally describe the redacted material,
unless the description wouldreveal itscontents.

 

G.
Reporting Status:
The Department Head shall advise the FOIA Coordinator within three (3) business
days as to whether the requested records exist and whether they are, in whole
or in part, available on the County website, and are subject to denial or
exempt from disclosure.  If additional
time is necessary to provide this information, the FOIA Coordinator will be
advised and provided a good faith estimate of when the information can be
provided.The Department Head shall forward the records to the FOIA Coordinator
to be sent to the Requester, and if applicable, a draft copy to the  Notice of Denial of FOIA Request or Notice to
Extend Response Time for FOIA Request. The FOIA Coordinator will finalize these
forms when needed, and will prepare the FOIA Cost Worksheet when charges apply
to the request.

 

H.
Respond to
Request:
The
County FOIA Coordinator shall respond to a request, usingthe required form
packet, within five (5) business days from the date upon whichhe/she receives the
request, unless otherwise agreed to in writing by the requestingperson.

 

I.
Process
Response:
If
the requested record is not subject to one of the groundsfor denial or an
exemption, it shall be processed in the followingmanner:

 

1.
Response
Options:
Within
five (5) business days, unless otherwise agreedto in writing by the requesting
person, the FOIA Coordinator shall do one ofthe following:

 

a.
Grant therequest.

 

b.
Deny the request and provide the reason why the
request is subjectto denial orexempt.

 

c.
Grant the request
in part and deny the request in part.

 

d.
Using the FOIA
response form, provide notice extending the response deadline for not more than
an additional ten (10) business days. The notice shall contain the reasons for
the extension and the date by which the Public Body will respond to the
request. Not more than one (1) notice of extension shall be issued.

 

J.
Fees for PublicRecords:

 

1.
Permissible Fees: The Public
Body may charge a fee for copyingpublic records for the requesting person or to
enable inspection. A fee mayalso be
charged for search, examination, review or redaction of public records,but only
if failure to charge a fee would result in unreasonably highcosts specifically
identified by the Public Body. Collected fees shall be creditedto the Public Body
that incurred the cost of processing therequest.

 

2.
Calculation
of Fees:
The
applicable fees shall be calculated by the FOIA Coordinator or designee in
accordance with ICMCF’s
FOIA Procedures and Guidelines and
using the Detailed Cost Itemization Form. The Department Heads shall assist in
providing the applicable labor and copying costs to the FOIA Coordinator or
designee.

 

K.
Deposit: If the total fee exceeds
$50.00, the County FOIA Coordinator may require a depositof not more than
one-half of thefee. The Requestor will also be provided a good faith estimate
of when the records will provided to the
Requestor when a deposit is required.

 

L.
Fee Payment Enforcement: Once copies
of the requested records have beenmade, the Public Body is authorized to require
payment of fees in full beforeit delivers the records to the requestingperson.

 

Exception:  If a deposit is
required, the Public Body may refuseto process the request until the deposit
ispaid.

                          

M.
Exceptions to FeeProcedure:

 

1.        Public records may be
provided without charge or at reduced charge ifthe Public Body determines that
the record primarily benefits thegeneral public, and it is in the public
interest to provide it without chargeor at reduced charge.

 

2.        The first $20.00 of
the total fee for requested records shall be waived ifthe requesting person
submits an Affidavit of Indigence (containedin the required formpacket).

 

N.     Appeal:A requesting
person has the right toappeal the denial of a request for public records, or to
appeal the fees charged.  All such
Appeals shall be filed with theFOIA Coordinator and shall be processed in
accordance with
ICMCF FOIA Procedures and Guidelines.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Originated:  06/15