Public Records Requests

The California Public Records Act (Government Code Section 6250 et seq.) provides California citizens with important rights to obtain access to records held by public agencies in the State. The purpose of this policy is to clarify for the public, attorneys, insurance adjusters, and private investigators, the process by which the City of Sierra Madre will respond to requests for records under the Public Records Act.

  1. While not mandatory, it is helpful if requests for public records are submitted to the City Clerk's office by using this portal, unless the request is to review an agenda or agenda reports of the City, which are available at the City’s public counter in book or binder form, and agenda reports after April 2012 are available on the City’s website.

  2. The City will respond to all requests as soon as possible, but no later than the ten calendar day period, or extensions of that period, as provided by Government Code Section 6253.

    1. The City shall review the request and determine whether the request seeks identifiable records and, if not, the City shall assist the person making the request to identify records and information that are responsive to the request or to the purpose of the request, if stated.

    2. The City shall respond to the person requesting records by advising him or her in writing of the availability of the documents, a description of the format, and location in which the records are kept, and whether any of the documents are exempt from disclosure under the provisions of the Public Records Act. To the extent feasible, the City will provide suggestions for overcoming any practical basis for denying access to the records or information sought in compliance with the Public Records Act.

    3. If a request is made for copies of the records, the City shall also advise the person requesting copies of the estimated costs of copying the records requested.

    4. The person requesting the copies shall pay the per page charge for copying as set forth by resolution of the City Council of the City of Sierra Madre for all copies requested. The City shall not make the requested copies until a deposit in the amount of the estimated costs of copying is received and shall not release the copies until the full cost of copying is paid to the City.

  3. In accordance with the Public Records Act, the City will provide only specific identifiable records but will not research City records for information or analyze information which may be contained within public records.

  4. The City will respond to requests for public records in accordance with the terms of the California Public Records Act as the Act now exists or may hereafter be amended, and nothing in this policy is intended nor shall it be construed to conflict with the terms of the Public Records Act.