A Standard FOIA Form

October 20th, 2011

The on-line Delaware FOIA FormThere’s now a standardized common FOIA form for citizens to submit Freedom of Information Act requests to Delaware state agencies.

The state’s  Freedom of Information Act (29 Del. Code, Chapter 100) establishes that “it is vital in a democratic society that public business be performed in an open and public manner” and that “it is vital that citizens have easy access to public records in order that the society remain free and democratic.”

The Act itself is several decades old and there had grown up a variety of different FOIA request forms and FOIA policies among state agencies, sometimes leading to confusion for citizens.

Senate Bill 87, passed in the 146th General Assembly and signed by Governor Markell on October 20, 2011, requires that a standard form for requests under the Act be made available to the public. Executive Order 31, approved by the Governor on October 20, 2011, requires executive branch agencies to adopt a standardized policy for requests under the Act.

To meet these requirements, GIC staff worked with the Governor’s Office and the Attorney General’s Office to create a standard on-line FOIA Request Form that allows citizens to submit information requests to state agencies. A saveable/printable PDF version of the form is available as well. And there is a list of State Agency FOIA Coordinators [pdf].

Governor Markell signed the bill and the Executive Order in a press conference on October 20 in Wilmington, at which he unveiled the new FOIA form.

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