NOTE: The legislature significantly renumbered the Public Records Law in 1987 and 2017. The below summaries refer to the numbering in the 2017 edition of the Oregon Revised Statutes. Full copies of public records orders issued since 1981 can be found at http://cdm17027.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/landingpage/collection/p17027coll ».
March 6, 1981, Don Bishoff ». Petition granted for the number of public employee signatures on petitions for union representation. ORS 192.345(7) exempted only the names and signatures of petitioners, not the number of signatures. And the National Labor Relation Board’s practice of not disclosing this information was not a prohibition and thus did not justify nondisclosure under ORS 192.355(8).
April 30, 1981, Julie Lou Tripp ». Petition granted for the names of unsuccessful bidders for a state contract, and the bid amounts. This information was not exempt as trade secret under ORS 192.345(2), and was not exempt as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4) because it should not reasonably be considered confidential.
May 15, 1981, Leslie Zaitz. Petition granted for a state senator’s financial statement submitted to the State Ethics Commission, and the transcript of the commission’s interview with the senator. Because the senator had invited interested parties to examine the records during a speech on the floor of the Senate, the requester had shown that no unreasonable invasion of privacy would occur under ORS 192.355(2).
May 19, 1982, Henry Kane ». Attorney General lacked jurisdiction under ORS 192.427 to consider a petition for Insurance Commissioner records. The commissioner had obtained these records as a court-appointed receiver and was thus subject to the direction of the judge, an elected official.
July 6, 1982, Leslie Zaitz ». Petition denied for investigatory report compiled by DOJ. The report was prepared by DOJ at the request of its client, and was exempt under the attorney-client privilege, ORS 40.225.
January 12, 1984, John Snell ». Petition granted for the income tax return and financial statement from a license application to the Oregon Racing Commission. These records were not exempt under the personal privacy exemption, ORS 192.355(2), because the public interest required disclosure. The public interest in the integrity and financial competence of licensees was great considering the circumstances of the industry at the time.
June 12, 1985, Les Ruark ». Petition granted for a sign-up sheet used to record attendance at a public forum on toxic waste disposal. This record was not exempt under ORS 192.355(4) as confidential information: names and addresses were not generally the type of information reasonably considered to be confidential, the public body did not oblige itself to keep this information confidential, and the public interest would not suffer by disclosure.
April 4, 1986, Michael J. Martinis ». Petition denied for the identity of a police informant. This information was exempt under the privilege for an informant’s identity, ORS 40.275; as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4) ; and as criminal investigatory information under ORS 192.345(3). The informant provided information under a promise of confidentiality, and there was an obvious public interest in encouraging citizens to report suspected crimes.
August 21, 1986, David R. Maier ». Petition denied for portions of records related to a business development loan. Certain detailed information on the applicant corporation’s customers, marketing, and finances were exempt under ORS 192.355(4) as confidential information. This information was not required as part of the application process, would give competitors a business advantage, and the public body promised applicants that loan information would be kept confidential to the extent permitted by Public Records Law. Disclosure would harm the public interest because it would discourage other applicants from applying for loans that the state had determined would promote industry and create employment
April 13, 1987, Chris Bristol ». Petition denied for a public university’s payroll records for the student body president. This information was exempt under FERPA because it related to a student’s employment in a position that could be filled only by a student. FERPA was incorporated as a public records exemption under ORS 192.355(8) because violations resulted in the loss of federal funds.
August 6, 1987, Lars Larson ». Petition denied for advertising materials created by private ad agencies for a public body. These materials were not public records because they were not prepared, owned, used, or retained by the public body. These materials were the property of the ad agencies, and the public body had not yet decided which materials would be used in the planned ad campaign. Although some of the materials may have been reviewed by state officials, that alone was not sufficient to convert private records into public ones.
August 13, 1987, Bennett Hall and Chris Bristol ». Petition denied as premature where the public body had not yet denied the records request. The public body was in the process of responding to the request and was entitled to time to gather the requested records and seek legal advice on disclosure.
December 16, 1987, Steven Boyd ». Petition denied for an inmate to possess a copy of his medical test. The Department of Corrections had allowed him to inspect the record, but would not allow him to possess the record within the prison due to security concerns. Neither Public Records Law nor ORS 179.505 conferred upon an inmate an unfettered right to possess confidential medical records within a prison.
December 30, 1987, Patrick O’Neill ». Petition denied for prices OHSU was paid by Blue Cross Blue Shield as part of a preferred provider plan contract. This information was trade secret under ORS 192.345(2) because providers competing with OHSU to be preferred providers could use the prices to undercut OHSU rates; and both Blue Cross and OHSU took steps to limit access to this information.
April 22, 1988, Robert Joondeph ». Petition denied for an Oregon State Hospital report about a patient’s suicide. The information relating to the patient’s medical history and treatment was exempt under ORS 179.505(2), while the quality assurance information relating to that patient was exempt under ORS 41.675. While the requester was an advocacy center that had statutory rights to certain confidential patient information, that did not affect the requester’s rights under Public Records Law.
April 22, 1988, Peter Murphy ». Petition granted for the PSU Foundation’s annual budgets. Although the foundation was not a public body, the budgets were “public records” under ORS 192.311(5) because they were prepared by a PSU official, approved by another PSU official (and therefore was “used” by that official), and were directly related to the activities of two state officials performing functions in their official capacities.
April 28, 1988, Paul Koberstein ». Petition granted for a letter to PSU from an accrediting committee. The letter was not exempt as an internal advisory communication under ORS 192.355(1) because the sender was not a public body under ORS 192.311(4) even if it was a federal agency; the letter contained many purely factual statements; the letter described a final action of the committee, rather than discussions preliminary to that action; and PSU had not explained how disclosing the letter would deter candid communications from the committee. In addition, PSU’s claim that adverse publicity would result from disclosure was not sufficient to justify the exemption.
September 2, 1988, Greg Smith ». Petition mostly denied for Board of Nursing records related to a patient’s death. ORS 678.126 made confidential not just information provided to the board but also any documents generated by the board that contained that information.
October 21, 1988, Charles L. Best ». Petition denied for records prepared by the Public Utility Commission for a pending contested case proceeding. The records were exempt as internal advisory communications under ORS 192.355(1) because pre-hearing access to the candid evaluations of the commission would undermine its ability to properly discharge its regulatory duties.
November 17, 1988, Max Rae ». Petition granted for an investigation file regarding a public body’s employee. The records were not exempt as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4) because although the investigator promised confidentiality to the witnesses, they would have cooperated regardless of that promise.
January 20, 1989, Greg Needham ». Petition denied for portions of Portland State University’s daily log of arrests and criminal reports that would reveal student identities. That information was exempt under FERPA as information directly related to a student.
January 24, 1989, Eleanor J. Parsons ». Petition granted for an individual’s answers to an exam conducted by the Board of Psychologist Examiners. The answers were not exempt under ORS 192.345(4) because the board did not assert that disclosure would threaten the integrity of future exams by indirectly revealing the questions used.
February 1, 1989, Lars K. Larson ». Petition denied for court exhibits from a bail hearing. Regardless of who was the custodian of these exhibits, the circuit court judge—an elected official—had denied the records request; therefore, the Attorney General could not consider the petition under ORS 192.427.
February 24, 1989, Richard A. Weill ». Petition granted for a proposed opinion and order in a Department of Revenue hearing. The records were not exempt as internal advisory communications under ORS 192.355(1) because the public interest in nondisclosure was insubstantial: the department had already shared with the requester records discussing the proposed order in detail.
March 28, 1989, Anthony M. Chapman ». Petition denied for an Oregon State Hospital patient’s diagnostic records and reports pertaining to psychiatric treatment and counseling. These records were exempt under ORS 179.505.
March 30, 1989, Thomas C. Howser ». Petition denied for the Oregon State Bar’s internal analysis of a pending disciplinary proceeding. The records were exempt as internal advisory communications under ORS 192.355(1). Disclosure would substantially prejudice the Bar’s ability to discharge its disciplinary responsibilities.
April 7, 1989, Darrell Martin ». Petition denied as premature where request was not specific enough to enable the public body to respond in a reasonable or knowledgeable fashion, and where the requester did not respond to public body’s attempt to clarify the request.
May 2, 1989, Nickolas Facaros ». Petition denied for records received by the Department of Agriculture from the federal Food & Drug Administration concerning an FDA investigation. Federal regulations prohibited the disclosure of FDA law enforcement investigation records in the possession of certain state and local governments until the federal case was closed or until the FDA Commissioner authorized disclosure.
May 9, 1989, Paul R. Hribernick ». Petition denied where the public body had not yet denied the records request. The public body was consulting its attorneys, and had not denied the request by failing to meet a deadline imposed by the requester.
July 7, 1989, P. Scott McCleery ». Petition denied for records prepared under the direction of an Oregon State University instructor from interviews with particular subjects. The records were exempt as faculty research under ORS 192.345(14) because even though some preliminary results had been released, research was continuing and the instructor planned subsequent publications.
July 14, 1989, David A. Rhoten ». Petition denied for public employee interviews conducted to evaluate a division. The records were exempt as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4) : the interviewed employees were promised confidentiality to encourage candor, and disclosure would undermine the review process by discouraging such candor.
December 7, 1989, Steven C. Baldwin ». Petition denied for fee schedules and price lists submitted to OHSU by unsuccessful bidders on a contract. The records were exempt as trade secrets under ORS 192.345(2) and the Uniform Trade Secrets Act: the pricing information could be used by competitors to undercut the bidders’ prices, and the bidders restricted access to this information. The public interest didn’t require disclosure because OHSU didn’t award any points based on these price lists, and because disclosure would discourage future bidders.
January 12, 1990, Susan G. Bischoff ». Petition denied for interviews conducted by the Department of Corrections in response to a complaint of sexual harassment. The records were exempt as pertaining to litigation under ORS 192.345(1): the interviews were conducted in response to a notice of tort claim, which indicated that litigation was reasonably likely to occur.
April 12, 1990, Marcus A. Petterson ». Petition granted for a letter to the Motor Vehicle Division reporting an individual’s poor driving. The record was not exempt as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4) because the public interest would not suffer by disclosure: information from several sources indicated that the letter was sent solely with the intent to harass the individual, and thus disclosure would discourage such false reports.
October 2, 1990, Harry Esteve ». Petition granted for a draft report written by the Public Utility Commission and the Department of Energy on the cost of an early shutdown of a nuclear power plant. The report was not exempt as an internal advisory communication under ORS 192.355(1) because the public interest in encouraging frank communication did not clearly outweigh the public interest in disclosure: the draft report was essentially the same as the publicly released final report, and it concerned the possible economic effects of a controversial ballot measure.
November 26, 1990, Dave Hogan ». Petition granted for a disciplinary letter to a Motor Vehicles Division employee. The record was not exempt as a personnel discipline action under ORS 192.345(12) because the public interest required disclosure: the employee had been criminally charged with misusing a public office for financial gain, and some of the details of the alleged conduct had been published in a newspaper article.
April 2, 1991, Chris Williamson ». Petition granted for the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of jurors in a particular case in circuit court. This information was not exempt under ORS 10.215 because it came directly from the jurors, not from the source lists used to select jurors. And the information was not exempt under the personal privacy exemption, ORS 192.355(2), because the jurors’ names had already been disclosed in open court, and there was no individualized showing that disclosing the contact info would constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy.
July 8, 1991, Jim Marr ». Petition for a fee waiver of $837.51 denied where the public body had waived the fee to locate and edit the records, and had waived 25% of its legal costs in reviewing the records. In view of the public body’s substantial costs in fulfilling the request, its decision not to completely waive the fee was reasonable.
August 1, 1991, Lars Larson ». Petition for a fee waiver of $116.08 denied where the public body agreed to waive the $31.83 in cost to search for, edit, and sort the records. The decision to waive only 27% of the fee was not arbitrary or capricious where the volume of the request was substantial and not routine.
December 23, 1991, Steve Mayes ». Petition denied for Treasury records that had been gathered by DOJ’s Criminal Justice Division as part of an ongoing criminal investigation. The records were exempt as criminal investigatory info under ORS 192.345(3) even though they had not originally been created for law enforcement purposes. The public interest did not require disclosure because disclosure would create a significant risk and burden to the ongoing criminal investigation. In addition, the petition for other records was premature as the public body had not yet denied the request but was reviewing the records in consultation with its attorneys.
January 27, 1992, Robert Moody ». Petition granted for Oregon State Police disciplinary actions taken against two lieutenants for federal game law violations. The records were not exempt as personnel discipline actions under ORS 192.345(12) because the public interest required disclosure: the employees were law enforcement officers with supervisory responsibilities; the basis for the discipline resulted in criminal prosecution and sanction; the criminal proceedings had completed; and the criminal allegations and disposition had been made public.
February 25, 1992, Lex Loeb ». Petition denied for records in the custody of the Columbia River Gorge Commission. The commission was not an Oregon public body because it was a bi-state regional agency governed by federal law and an interstate compact.
March 27, 1992, Dwight Leighty ». Petition granted in part for the gross pay of a Public Utility Commission employee and the number of years the employee had worked for the commission. This information was not exempt because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy under ORS 192.355(2): public employees did not have a reasonable expectation that their salaries would be kept confidential, and the public had an important interest in knowing these salaries. However, information on whether the employee was providing insurance for a named minor child through a payroll deduction was exempt.
December 11, 1992, Bruce Smith ». Petition denied for a statewide student survey conducted by a contractor for the Office of Alcohol & Drug Abuse. The survey results were public records despite not being prepared, used, or retained by the office because the office owned the results under the terms of the contract. However, the reports were exempt from disclosure as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4): the school administrators and students had been assured of confidentiality, the survey asked for highly personal information about alcohol and drug use that reasonably should be considered confidential, and the public interest would suffer if students were discouraged from responding.
January 26, 1993, Joanna Patten ». Petition denied for portions of a Department of Corrections security audit of a prison. These portions were exempt under ORS 192.355(5) as information that would substantially prejudice the department’s functions. The audit detailed the specifics of the prison’s security practices and procedures, as well as evaluations of the adequacy of these practices. Public knowledge of this information could be used by inmates to circumvent security measures to escape or receive contraband.
May 19, 1993, Bruce E. Smith ». Petition denied for fee waiver of $715.34 where the public body waived $170.13. Although there was a public interest in the circumstances of care in a foster home where a child had recently died, the records contained a substantial amount of exempt information, and the requester’s payment of the fee indicated that the cost was not a barrier to access.
June 22, 1993, Andrew Hyman ». Petition denied for the Department of Forestry’s marbled murrelet survey forms. The records were exempt as information regarding threatened species under ORS 192.345(13). The murrelet was a threatened species, and the records contained information about its habitat, location, and population. The public interest didn’t require disclosure where it would be nearly impossible to protect the animals from disturbance or harm. Although the requester offered to restrict re-disclosure of the records, Public Records Law provided no mechanism to enforce such a stipulation.
February 7, 1994, Bruce Smith ». Petition denied for medical records of certain patients at a state hospital. The records were exempt under the psychotherapist-patient privilege, and the physician-patient privilege. These privileges applied even though the patients were deceased.
May 4, 1994, Frank Dixon ». Petition denied for fee waiver of $230.52 where the public body agreed to reduce the fee by 25%. Even though the requester was a charitable organization with the goal to educate the public about animal protection issues and did not have substantial resources to pay the fee, the denial was not unreasonable because of legitimate concerns that the requester would not actually disseminate the records to the general public.
May 5, 1994, Connie Wright ». Petition denied as moot where the public body agreed to produce information on leave time for certain of its employees. The records were not exempt because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy under ORS 192.355(2): an employee’s co-workers are usually aware of the general reason that an employee is off from work and the length of leave time. And even if the collective bargaining contract limited disclosure of this information, that contract could not override Public Records Law.
May 25, 1994, David Laine ». Petition granted for the performance evaluation of the manager of the local office of the Employment Department. The evaluation was not exempt under the personal privacy exemption, ORS 192.355(2), because clear and convincing evidence indicated that the public interest required disclosure: the public had a definite interest in knowing how well the manager performed his duties as this had a significant effect in determining how well the office provided public services.
December 2, 1994, Timothy M. Parks ». Petition denied for portions of a property appraisal obtained by the Department of Transportation. These portions were exempt as appraisal information under ORS 192.345(6). Even though the property at issue had been acquired by the time of the petition, the portions were relevant to planned appraisals of similarly situated properties that had yet to be acquired.
April 3, 1995, Lars Larson ». Petition denied for records relating to a pending personnel disciplinary matter. Because the exemption for personnel discipline actions applied only to completed discipline actions, it was reasonable for the public body to wait until the conclusion of the process to determine if any discipline action would be taken.
April 14, 1995, Steve Mayes ». Petition denied for a list of all the employees involved in a high-profile matter because the public body agreed to disclose this information: the list was not exempt because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy under ORS 192.355(2).
June 19, 1995, Sheri A. Speede ». Petition denied for videotapes that served as data for an article published by an OHSU faculty member. These records were exempt as faculty research under ORS 192.345(14): even though some preliminary results of the research project had been released, continuing publications based on these records were planned. The public interest didn’t require disclosure because premature disclosure would have a chilling effect on faculty publications.
August 30, 1995, Spencer Heinz ». Petition denied for a public body’s investigation of allegations of sexual misconduct involving a child protective service worker. The records were exempt as criminal investigatory info under ORS 192.345(3) because the district attorney had obtained the records for use in a pending criminal prosecution.
November 22, 1995, Lars K. Larson ». Petition denied for evidence admitted in a criminal trial. The Attorney General did not have jurisdiction to consider the petition under ORS 192.427 as the circuit court judge had denied the request. Even though this particular judge had been appointed to office, the fact that the office was elective in nature precluded consideration of the petition.
January 26, 1996, John E. Gutbezahl ». Petition denied for the portion of an agreement between the Department of Corrections and a Texas county for the housing of inmates that discussed the medical criteria used in screening inmates with the county, and that discussed the management of hunger strikes. These portions were exempt under ORS 192.355(5) as disclosure would substantially prejudice the department’s functions. Inmates seeking to avoid transfer to Texas would be able to use the medical screening criteria to feign medical conditions. And inmate knowledge of the specific intervention procedures for hunger strikes could lead to prolonged hunger strikes.
May 10, 1996, John G. Kelley ». Petition denied for modem access to the DMV’s records. DMV had no way to protect records from modification if this access were granted, and had no way to limit access to only nonexempt information.
September 9, 1996, Justin Burns. » Petition granted for telephone numbers of hunting license holders from the Department of Fish and Wildlife. These records were not exempt under ORS 192.355(2) because the department had not determined on an individualized basis that disclosure would constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy.
September 18, 1996, Larry Tuttle ». Petition denied for fee waiver where the public body had agree to reduce the fee by 25%. The public body did not abuse its discretion in denying full waiver because the size and complexity of the request were extraordinarily large, large numbers of the records would likely be exempt from disclosure, and waiving the fee would interfere with the public body’s ability to fulfill its other duties.
October 11, 1996, J. Todd Foster ». Petition granted in part for disciplinary records of a captain at the Board on Public Safety Standards & Training. The records dealing with a complaint for making insensitive comments about a student’s religious beliefs and ethnicity were not exempt as a personnel discipline action under ORS 192.345(12) because the public interest required disclosure: the public had a legitimate interest in monitoring the effectiveness of the instruction given to law enforcement officers, and the conduct at issue was contrary to the minimum standards of moral fitness set by the board. In addition, much of the substance of the discipline had already been publicized. The petition was denied in part for any other disciplinary records concerning the captain as they were unrelated to his training responsibilities and did not involve the captain exercising law enforcement functions.
January 15, 1997, Nonalee Burr ». Petition denied in part for a background investigation report prepared by the State Police on an applicant to the Board on Public Safety Standards & Training. Information provided by the applicant’s former employers regarding the applicant’s separation of employment was exempt as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4). The employers provided this information on the condition of confidentiality, and another statute making employer references confidential indicated that this information was of a confidential nature. The public interest would suffer by disclosure because the state’s ability to gather candid information about job applicants would be hindered.
March 3, 1997, Poo-sa’key ». Petition denied in part for a State Police report reviewing whether a tribe was complying with a compact regulating the tribe’s gaming. Portions of the report were exempt as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4): The tribe agreed under the compact to allow the state to review its records and have access to nonpublic areas of the gaming facility on the condition of confidentiality. And the tribe would not have been required by law to allow access and inspection absent the compact. The public interest would suffer by disclosure because the State Police needed access to the records in order to properly monitor the tribe’s compliance with the compact.
May 2, 1997, David A. Bledsoe ». Petition denied for scoring sheets and evaluation materials used by the Housing & Community Services Department in awarding tax credits. These records were exempt as data used to administer an examination under ORS 192.345(4). The department used essentially similar materials from cycle to cycle, and disclosure would allow applicants to tailor their responses to the methodology.
August 6, 1997, Carlton Scott Parrish ». Petition denied for proposed budget cuts being considered by Oregon State University. The records were exempt as internal advisory communications under ORS 192.355(1). The public interest in disclosure was clearly outweighed by the public interest in frank communications by public officials: university managers would be reluctant to engage in frank discussions of potentially unpopular decisions if those discussions were made public, particularly where the final decision on which cuts to implement had not yet been made.
September 19, 1997, James Long ». Petition denied for investigatory records of the Occupational Safety & Health Division relating to a steelwork collapse at the airport. These records were exempt under ORS 192.345(17) as investigatory information relating to a violation of the Safe Employment Act. The public interest didn’t require disclosure because disclosure would interfere with the integrity of the pending investigation, and the records would become disclosable when the final administrative decision was made or when a citation was issued.
June 26, 1998, Bradley Scheminske ». Petition granted in part for records related to the Workers’ Compensation Board’s investigation of a former administrative law judge. Letters supporting the judge that were submitted by the judge were not exempt under the personal privacy exemption, ORS 192.355(2), because the information related to the judge’s job performance. These letters were not exempt as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4) despite a cover letter asserting confidentiality because the board did not promise confidentiality. And the letters were not exempt as a personnel discipline action under ORS 192.345(12) because no discipline was ever imposed.
The petition was denied in part for notes made by the presiding administrative law judge in reviewing various records. The portions of these notes that were merely objective descriptions of the content of the records were not exempt as internal advisory communications under ORS 192.355(1), but the portions that interpreted and evaluated the materials were so exempt. Disclosing these portions would undermine the board’s ability to obtain a frank appraisal from the presiding judge.
July 9, 1998, Bradley Scheminske ». Petition denied for Workers’ Compensation Board records that would identify the names of claimants in active cases, as well as the relevant employer, insurer, and attorneys. This information was exempt as workers’ compensation claim records under ORS 192.355(20). “Claim records” was broadly interpreted to mean any information that would establish that a worker had filed a claim.
September 4, 1998, Dan Spatz ». Petition denied for lightning strike data made available to the Department of Forestry under a licensing agreement with a private company. The information was exempt as a trade secret under ORS 192.345(2) and the Uniform Trade Secrets Act: the company restricted internal access, the information had real commercial value as it was created by the company and sold to customers, and no other competitor had access to such complete and detailed information. The public interest didn’t require disclosure as losing access to this information would hamper the department’s ability to quickly detect and suppress fires caused by lightning; in addition it wasn’t apparent how disclosure would assist the public in monitoring the department’s business.
The data was also exempt as a confidential information under ORS 192.355(4): the contract with the private company promised that the department would keep the information confidential; and the information was reasonably considered confidential because it had significant commercial value that would be diminished by disclosure.
August 2, 1999, Damon L. Vickers ». Petition denied for a Department of Justice memo regarding the Occupational Safety & Health Division’s proposed revision of its rules. This memo, and the division’s internal communications reflecting advice from the memo, were exempt under the attorney-client privilege, ORS 40.225. A reference to the advice in the division’s notice of proposed rulemaking did not waive the privilege as the fact that the division had sought legal services did not reveal a significant part of the privileged memo.
September 20, 1999, Brian Michael ». Petition denied for a list of students’ grades from a course at Oregon State University. The list was exempt under FERPA, even with the student names redacted, because the requester had knowledge that likely could be used to easily trace some of the grades to specific students.
December 1, 1999, Anne L. Nichol ». Petition denied for a list of all outstanding and uncashed warrants issued by the state in the amount of $2,000 or greater in the previous two years. This information was exempt as a report of unclaimed property under ORS 192.355(16), even though the warrants weren’t yet reportable. The intent behind the exemption was to allow public bodies time to locate the owners before providing the information to researchers who charged the owners for their services.
December 17, 1999, Charles Sheketoff ». Petition denied for employment reports prepared by the Employment Department for the Adult & Family Services Division. The Employment Department was not the custodian of these reports under ORS 192.311(2) because it was acting as a limited agent for the division. The division, not the department, determined the parameters and distribution of the reports. Because the department wasn’t the custodian, it wasn’t obligated to produce the records, unless they weren’t otherwise available from the division.
March 10, 2000, Steve Suo & Steve Mayes ». Petition denied for a fee waiver for Department of Transportation records relating to Y2K computer repairs. The department was constitutionally prohibited from using its Highway Fund to fulfill records requests, and therefore could not waive its fee. While the department had access to other funds, these were all statutorily dedicated for specific uses that did not involve making public records available.
July 17, 2000, Pat Forgey ». Petition denied for the State Police’s sex offender database in electronic form. Because some of this information was exempt, and the software did not permit just the nonexempt information to be exported electronically, the public body was permitted to produce the nonexempt information via screen prints.
September 5, 2000, Herbert D. Riley ». Petition denied for records generated by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs in the course of investigating a complaint of discrimination. The records were created solely at the request of the department’s attorneys in order to facilitate the rendition of legal services, and were not intended to be disclosed to third persons. Therefore, the records were exempt under the attorney-client privilege, ORS 40.225.
November 9, 2000, Don S. Simpson ». Petition granted for a report prepared by the Building Codes Division for the City of Silverton in response to a complaint against the city. The record was not exempt as pertaining to litigation under ORS 192.345(1) because it wasn’t prepared in conjunction with any pending litigation. And the record was not exempt as a personnel discipline action under ORS 192.345(12): even though the report included information about Silverton employees, the division compiled the report to regulate the city’s building inspection program, not to discipline employees.
January 31, 2001, Charles Hinkle ». Petition denied for records of the Oregon School Activities Association because the association was not a state agency and therefore its denial was not subject to review by the Attorney General. The association was a voluntary consortium of public and private school districts, none of which were state agencies. Its role in regulating high school competition was not an activity traditionally performed by state agencies. The association did not have authority to make binding decisions for state government, did not receive any financial support from state government, and was not subject to supervision or control on a day-to-day basis from state government.
February 1, 2001, Leslie L. Zaitz ». Petition denied for the director of the Office of Emergency Management’s candid assessment of the potential administrative consequences resulting from the accidental activation of a public warning system. This information was exempt as an internal advisory communication under ORS 192.355(1) as the public interest in encouraging frank communications between public officials clearly outweighed the public interest in disclosure: the assessment would not help the public understand the causes contributing to the incident, and disclosure could harm the office’s ability to work as part of a cooperative effort with the other entities that oversaw the warning system.
June 28, 2001, Leslie L. Zaitz ». Petition denied for correspondence between the Department of Education and the Government Standards & Practices Commission related to an ethics investigation. The correspondence possessed by the public officials in the department were not public records as the investigations concerned the officials in their personal capacities.
August 15, 2001, Vincent Padgett and Pamela Eller ». Petition denied for the results of a State Police polygraph test because the records were exempt as criminal investigatory information under ORS 192.345(3). Although the criminal trial was completed, the public interest didn’t require disclosure because public disclosure of the inadmissible polygraph results could affect a jury at a potential re-trial.
October 31, 2001, William Miller ». Petition denied for fee waiver of $1,150 where the public body had waived $1,500 from a related records request from the same requester and the search for records would require hand searching tens of thousands of documents.
November 13, 2001, Pat Forgey ». Petition denied for the names of undercover law enforcement officers contained in a police report. This information was exempt under ORS 181A.825 as information about an employee while assigned to undercover investigative duties.
April 5, 2002, Paul B. Meadowbrook ». Petition granted in part for investigatory information gathered by the Teacher Standards & Practices Commission. Information submitted by students was not exempt under ORS 342.176(4) as material not related to disciplinary action even though the information was not factually related to the charges under investigation: the publicly disclosed investigative report that resulted in discipline referred to this information and the commission obtained the information during the investigation that led to discipline.
Some of this same information was not exempt under ORS 192.355(2) because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy: the investigator had advised the student providing the information that public disclosure might result during the disciplinary process.
The information subpoenaed from the school district that came from confidential personnel files and that was publicly disclosed in the commission’s final order of suspension was not exempt as a transferred record under ORS 192.355(10) because the considerations giving rise to the confidentiality no longer applied. However, the petition was denied in part for the information that had not been publicly disclosed.
And the teacher’s settlement offer to the commission was not exempt as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4) : even though the offer was labeled as confidential, the commission never promised confidentiality.
September 3, 2002, James Long ». Petition denied for records of Oregon Public Broadcasting because it was not a state agency and thus its denial could not be reviewed by the Attorney General. Creating and broadcasting television and radio programs was not traditionally associated with state government; OPB was a private, not-for-profit corporation that had no ability to make decisions binding state agencies; its employees were not public employees; and the governor-appointed members of OPB’s board were a minority and subject to removal by the board, not by the governor.
October 7, 2002, Jeanyse R. Snow ». Petition denied where the requester was the City of Warrenton. Public Records Law provided access only to persons, which did not include public bodies.
November 19, 2002, Scott Forrester ». Petition denied for records of the Citizens’ Utility Board because the board was not a public body. The board advocated for utility consumers, an activity not exclusive to government. The board did not have the authority to resolve or decide any issue of public policy or make binding decisions for government, and was privately funded. And the state had little control over the board: its members were elected by utility consumers, and the board was exempt from many statutes governing public contracting and state financial administration.
March 29, 2004, Jim Redden ». Petition denied for records of the Oregon Historical Society because the society was not a public body. The society’s mission of operating a regional research library was not exclusive to activities traditionally performed by government. The society did not have any authority to make binding governmental decisions, and was largely financed by membership fees, contributions, and publication sales. While the society was statutorily required to perform certain tasks with respect to the Oregon Trail, it was not subject to government oversight and control, and board members were not appointed by the state.
April 22, 2004, William Joseph Birhanzl ». Petition denied for the records of a Multnomah County Circuit Court proceeding. The court had agreed to provide the stenographic tape of the proceeding, but had never ordered a transcription of the tape and was not required to do so by Public Records Law.
October 13, 2004, Gary Johansen ». Petition denied for information on the Real Estate Agency’s licensees. The agency had already agreed to provide the requester with a CD-ROM containing some of this information, and producing the remaining information would have required IT staff to prepare extensive custom programs.
October 14, 2004, Sarah Jeans ». Petition denied for fee waiver where the requester’s interest in obtaining the record was for personal use in court. This personal interest was not sufficient to show that disclosure would primarily benefit the general public. And the requester’s inability to pay was insufficient on its own to require fee waiver.
December 3, 2004, Naseem Rakha ». Petition denied for records of a state representative. The Attorney General did not have authority under ORS 192.427 to consider a petition for records in the custody of an elected official.
December 9, 2004, Jim Redden ». Petition denied for governor’s office records that had been transferred to the State Archives as the archives had not yet denied the records request. The petition had been filed only ten days after the records request had been submitted, and the archives was permitted reasonable time to consult with the governor’s office to determine which records were exempt from disclosure.
March 23, 2005, Janie Har ». Petition denied for subcontracts executed on behalf of the state by a Department of Transportation contractor. These subcontracts were not public records because the department had not prepared, used, or retained them. And the department’s contractual right to access the subcontracts did not give the department ownership.
May 26, 2005, Bryan Andrade ». Petition denied for the DMV to identify and disclose the state law referenced in a DMV record. Public Records Law did not require the DMV to answer questions about its records by engaging in legal research.
June 30, 2005, William J. Mills ». Petition denied where the public body had not yet denied the records request: providing a fee estimate to the requester did not constitute a denial, and therefore the Attorney General did not have authority to order disclosure.
January 27, 2006, James W. Laws ». Petition denied for the State Police’s operations plan that had been used at a state park on Memorial Day weekend. This plan was exempt under ORS 192.345(18) as a specific operational plan in connection with an anticipated threat to individual or public safety. The plan was going to be used again the next year, and disclosure would allow individuals to figure out how to defeat the plan’s procedures and methods.
February 21, 2007, Lemuel Hentz ». Petition denied for records of the Legislative Counsel Committee. While the legislature was in session, it did not qualify as a state agency under Public Records Law, and thus the Attorney General lacked the authority to consider the petition.
August 8, 2007, Karen Kirsch ». Petition denied for portions of a health insurer’s proposed rates and supporting materials that had been submitted to the Insurance Division. This information was exempt as a trade secret under ORS 192.345(2) and the Uniform Trade Secrets Act. The information had been compiled from specialized knowledge about the insurer’s business that was known only by the insurer’s actuaries. And disclosing the information would allow the insurer’s competitors to formulate their own rates without having to spend the amounts the insurer did, and otherwise obtain a competitive advantage.
November 21, 2007, Allen Van Dyke ». Petition denied for a report prepared by the Department of Fish & Wildlife’s attorneys in response to complaints filed with BOLI. The report was exempt under the attorney-client privilege, ORS 40.225. Although ORS 192.355(9)(b) provided an exception to the privilege for certain factual information, that exception did not apply because the report had been compiled for an administrative hearing initiated against the department, and the department had not made any public statement partially disclosing information from the report.
November 23, 2007, Amy Hsuan ». Petition granted in part for a settlement agreement between the Teacher Standards & Practices Commission and a teacher. The settlement was not exempt under ORS 342.176(4) because it reflected a final decision by the commission, and was therefore not a part of the underlying investigation.
January 16, 2008, William Harbaugh ». Petition granted for the salaries of college presidents contained in a consultant’s report to the Oregon University System. This information was not exempt as confidential information under ORS 192.355(4) . Even though the consultant had assured surveyed colleges that this information would be kept confidential, the information could not reasonably be considered confidential: public colleges’ executive compensation information was publicly available through the public records laws of the various states, private colleges’ information was publicly available from the IRS, and at least one source compiled and published this information on an annual basis.
February 20, 2008, Ryan Frank ». Petition denied for records provided to the State Treasurer’s office by a private investment vehicle. These records were exempt under ORS 192.355(14)(a) as relating to actual or proposed investments in a privately placed investment fund.
March 4, 2008, Brent Walth ». Petition granted for records documenting a meeting between a Portland State University professor and a state senator. These documents qualified as public records: even though the professor was acting as the head of a nonprofit, not in his public capacity with PSU, the documents related to the conduct of the public’s business because the state senator may have been acting as a public official during the meeting. And PSU had “used” the documents because the professor acted for PSU in reliance on this information by resigning from the nonprofit in order to insulate PSU from potential negative consequences.
March 13, 2008, William Harbaugh ». Petition denied for fee waiver where the fee had already been paid and a previous order had addressed the same issue. Although the Attorney General had authority to reconsider previously issued public records orders, and the authority to order public bodies to refund fees previously collected, the petition did not present any new information that would be relevant to assessing the reasonableness of the denial at the time the denial was made.
April 11, 2008, Jerry Dusenberry ». Petition denied for the release date of an inmate. This information, when requested by another inmate, was exempt under ORS 192.355(5) as disclosure would substantially prejudice or prevent the Department of Corrections from carrying out its functions. Inmates used information about the nature of other inmates’ crimes as extortion or to target certain inmates.
May 20, 2008, William Harbaugh ». Petition denied where the delay in the public body’s response was partly due to the requester failing to comply with the publicly available procedure for making a public records request.
July 11, 2008, Michael Moradian ». In order to sustain a denial of a request for the number of students receiving specific grades in particular classes, the University of Oregon would have the burden of showing that disclosure would allow the students’ identities to be easily traceable (and therefore exempt under FERPA).
July 24, 2008, Tom Rios ». Petition denied for payroll records of a subcontractor of the Oregon Bridge Delivery Partnership, which itself was a contractor of the Department of Transportation. Even if the partnership were a public body with respect to some of its functions, it did not possess the payroll records pursuant to any governmental functions. The partnership was a private entity formed by two private entities, reporting certified payroll information was not a role traditionally exclusive to governmental entities, and the partnership was not subject to ODOT control relevant to the reporting of this payroll data.
September 3, 2008, Jacob Barrett ». Petition denied for records of the Oklahoma Department of Corrections requested by an inmate. The Oklahoma DOC was not an Oregon public body and therefore was not subject to Public Records Law, despite a provision in the Interstate Corrections Compact that an inmate transferred across state lines did not lose legal rights they would have enjoyed had they remained in Oregon.
October 27, 2008, William Harbaugh ». Petition denied where the public body had not yet issued any denial. Regardless of whether the public body had complied with the requirement to acknowledge public records requests “as soon as practicable and without unreasonable delay,” a lapse of approximately two weeks did not support a finding of constructive denial.
November 7, 2008, Frank Mussell ». Petition denied for investigatory records of the Board of Nursing. The records were exempt under ORS 676.175 because the board had not yet decided whether to pursue disciplinary action. The fact that the requester was the attorney of the licensee under investigation did not affect the analysis.
February 24, 2009, Charlie Ringo ». Petition denied as premature where the underlying request was reasonably perceived by the public body as a request for discovery in an administrative matter, not as a public records request. The two types of requests required agencies to weigh different considerations, and public bodies were not obligated to treat every apparent discovery request as a request for records under the Public Records Law.
April 24, 2009, William Harbaugh ». Petition denied for fee waiver where the public body had reduced its fee by 25%. Under circumstances specific to this petition, the fact that the public body had initially provided a cost estimate that turned out to be based on an incomplete set of records did not affect the analysis; therefore, the requester would be required to pay the additional cost to obtain the remaining records.
May 19, 2009, George Miller ». Petition denied for investigatory records of the Veterinary Medical Examining Board. The records were exempt under ORS 676.175 as the board had not issued a notice of intent to impose discipline on the licensee, and the requester failed to show by clear and convincing evidence that the public interest required disclosure. The interest in learning about the death of the requester’s animal was a personal interest, not a public one. And the interest in ensuring that the board properly handled the investigation was common to all investigations, and thus could not be used to distinguish this particular investigation.
September 10, 2009, Will Rogers ». Petition denied for fee waiver of $622.01 where the public body had agreed to reduce its fee by 25%. There was a substantial public interest in records related to Oregon State University’s decision to remove a campus newspaper’s distribution bins from campus, but the volume of records was large and because the requester was the campus newspaper affected, at least some of its interest in these records was a private interest, not a public one.
October 20, 2009, Daniel C. Re ». Petition granted in part for PERS records showing whether former Governor Goldschmidt was a member on a certain date, and whether then-Governor Kulongoski was a PERS member. This information was not exempt under ORS 192.355(12) because the fact of being a PERS member did not qualify as a nonfinancial membership record. This information was not exempt ORS 192.355(2) because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy: the fact of PERS membership was automatic and involuntary for most members, and thus membership could be inferred based on an individual’s employer. The petition was denied in part for information on whether the state or another employer picked up contributions on behalf of Governor Kulongoski: this information was exempt as employee financial records under ORS 192.355(12).
March 26, 2010, Les Zaitz and Ted Sickinger ». Petition denied for records of travel expenses incurred by an investment LLC in sending a Treasury employee to the LLC’s annual meeting. These records were not owned, prepared, used, or retained by the Treasury and therefore were not public records. The Treasury’s right of access to these records under a partnership agreement did not constitute ownership.
April 8, 2010, Tom Dimitre ». Petition granted for the Department of Fish and Wildlife to reconsider its decision to deny a fee waiver. The department could not rely on a “budget crisis” to deny every request for a fee waiver. Rather, it had to assess each waiver or reduction request independently.
April 26, 2010, Rachel Bachman ». Petition granted for the consideration Nike agreed to pay the University of Oregon in exchange for the rights to use the university’s sports programs in Nike’s marketing. Even if this information were exempt as a trade secret under ORS 192.345(2) and the Uniform Trade Secrets Act, the public interest required disclosure. Without access to this information about the sale of a public asset, the public would have no way of evaluating whether the university had received adequate consideration.
May 17, 2010, Peter Ferris ». Petition granted for the Housing and Community Services Department to reconsider its decision to deny a fee waiver. Disclosure of records to an organization that publicly distributed news and policy proposals related to manufactured homes, and that would enable homeowners to evaluate a dispute resolution program, would primarily benefit the general public. Therefore, the department was required to assess whether denial of the fee waiver was reasonable under the totality of the circumstances.
June 8, 2010, Les Zaitz ». Petition granted in part for the public body to provide a cost estimate that did not include the time to contact third parties to secure their permission to disclose the records; that time was not connected to the public body’s determination of whether the records were exempt or not, and therefore could not be charged to the requester.
June 16, 2010, Ross Day ». Petition granted for PERS records showing the effective date of former Governor Kitzhaber’s retirement, and the amount of the retirement benefit. This information was not exempt under ORS 192.355(2) because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy: the former governor was running for election as governor, which indicated a diminished expectation of privacy; and he was required as a candidate to file a statement of economic interest, which would reveal information about any PERS payments.
September 27, 2010, Daniel Re ». Petition granted for the date that a state representative joined PERS. This information was not exempt under ORS 192.355(12) as a PERS nonfinancial membership record.
October 1, 2010, Charlie Hinkle ». Petition granted for records showing all the PERS retirees whose annual retirement benefits exceeded $100,000. This information was not exempt under ORS 192.355(2) because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy: the fact that these retirees might receive unwanted solicitations was not sufficient to show such an invasion, and there was no empirical evidence linking disclosure of this information to identify theft. This information was not exempt under ORS 192.355(12) as PERS employee financial information because it pertained to retirees, not current employees.
October 19, 2010, Lee Van der Voo ». Petition granted in part for investigatory records of the Board of Dentistry relating to a licensee. Most of the records were not exempt under ORS 676.175 because the requester had shown by clear and convincing evidence that the public interest required disclosure: the details underlying the investigation had already been publicly disclosed through a detailed ruling by an arbitration panel in a civil suit.
November 3, 2010, Erin Mills ». Petition granted for a tort claim notice filed with the City of Hermiston. The notice was not exempt as a litigation record under ORS 192.345(1) because the notice was submitted by a potential adversary in litigation and therefore was “not remotely analogous” to the attorney-client privilege or the work product protection. The notice was not exempt as criminal investigatory information under ORS 192.345(3) because the city’s investigation was being done for insurance purposes, not as part of a criminal investigation.
June 20, 2012, Noelle Crombie ». Petition granted in part for the addresses of a marijuana grow site and the locations where cash was recovered on the property, information that was contained in State Police reports related to criminal charges brought against the grower. This information was not covered by the personal privacy exemption, ORS 192.355(2): the grower plead guilty to charges related to his marijuana production, and his privacy did not extend to criminal conduct. While such information with respect to an operating grow site could subject the site to criminal victimization, this particular grower was disqualified from further participation in growing under the medical marijuana program.
The petition was denied in part for the identities of medical marijuana patients connected to that grow site, as that information was exempt under ORS 192.355(2). Individual medical information was generally regarded as highly private, and there was no reason to believe that the patients were complicit in the unlawful activity.
June 22, 2012, John Tollefsen ». Petition granted where the records request had been pending for ten months. This delay constituted a constructive denial, and therefore the public body had to produce all nonexempt records.
December 14, 2012, Patrick Webb ». Petition granted for the results of a toxicology test requested by the State Medical Examiner. This information was not exempt as a medical examiner’s report under ORS 192.345(36) because the public interest required disclosure: the public had a significant interest in determining the causes of a car accident that killed the subject of the toxicology test and seriously injured another person.
March 11, 2013, Celeste Meiffren ». Petition granted for annual employment reports submitted by recipients of property tax abatements to Business Oregon in order to demonstrate compliance with the job-creation obligations they undertook in exchange for the incentives. This information was not exempt under ORS 285C.615(4) because that provision’s grant of permission for disclosure of aggregate figures could not be construed to imply that all other types of figures were exempt from disclosure. The information was not exempt under ORS 285C.615(5) as specific data concerning the financial performance of individual firms because this exemption applied to information that could be meaningfully applied to evaluate a firm’s overall financial performance, not specific information about labor costs.
This information was also not exempt under ORS 192.345(2) as trade secret because the public interest required disclosure: the public had a significant interest in learning about the return on the public’s investment in these companies through tax incentives. In addition, the information was not trade secret with respect to any submitting firms that had failed to check a box requesting confidential treatment of the materials.
April 15, 2013, Celeste Meiffren ». Petition granted in part for Department of Revenue records related to tax incentives in designated enterprise zones. The number of a business’s employees both before and after the zone was established were not exempt under ORS 192.345(2) as trade secrets because the public interest required disclosure: the public had a significant interest in learning about the large public investment in these zones. The petition was denied in part for the average annual compensation a business paid its employees and the investment cost of property placed in service in a given year. This information was exempt from disclosure under ORS 285C.145(4).
September 13, 2013, Kyle Iboshi ». Petition granted for information regarding an audit finding that an individual had continued to receive food stamps after winning more than $900,000 in the lottery. Information on the specific amount of winnings, how long the individual continued to collect food stamps, and how much in food stamp benefits had been paid to the individual following the winnings were not exempt under federal regulations governing the food stamp program because this information did not originate from the client household. This information was not exempt under ORS 411.320 because that statute applied only to DHS, not to the Audits Division of the Secretary of State. And this information was not exempt under ORS 192.355(2) because it was not an unreasonable invasion of privacy for the public to learn details about public benefits paid to an individual who clearly did not require them.
January 29, 2014, Robert MacKay ». Petition granted for the State Board of Bar Examiners’ meeting minutes. An Oregon Supreme Court Rule for Admission of Attorneys that prohibited the board from disclosing its records was not incorporated as a public records exemption by ORS 192.355(9)(a). However, the order acknowledged the possibility that information in the minutes might unduly hinder the ability of the judiciary to control admission to the Bar, and noted that this type of information could be redacted.
March 14, 2014, Rob Davis ». Petition granted for hazardous materials movements forms submitted to the Department of Transportation. This information was not exempt under ORS 192.345(22) as information that would permit unlawful disruption or interference with services because the public interest required disclosure: there was a significant public interest given the number of accidental explosions of crude oil trains; and the records dealt with past shipments and were relatively nonspecific, indicating a low risk of disruption to future shipments.
March 20, 2014, Lisa Arkin ». Petition granted for records relating to an incident of overspray of pesticides. These records were not exempt under two federal statutes because those statutes did not prohibit the records from being disclosed, and thus were not incorporated as exemptions under ORS 192.355(8) .
April 25, 2014, Molly Young ». Petition denied for the identities of complainants to BOLI about a City of Portland sick leave ordinance. This information was covered by the personal privacy exemption, ORS 192.355(2): disclosure would create the risk that the complainants’ employers would retaliate, and thus would constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy.
July 3, 2014, Everton Bailey, Jr ». Petition denied for portions of a State Lottery report that came from a probable cause affidavit filed by a police officer investigating child abuse. This information came from a law enforcement record generated in investigating child abuse, and therefore was exempt under ORS 419B.035.
November 17, 2014, Patrick Braatz ». Petition granted in part for portions of a complaint submitted to the Board of Dentistry that addressed concerns about the business practices of managed care organizations, and for the corresponding discussion by the board in executive session. That information was not exempt under ORS 676.175 because clear and convincing evidence showed that the public interest required disclosure. Disclosing this information with the complainant’s and licensees’ names redacted would not implicate the interests that the exemption is designed to protect, and there was a high public interest in understanding how managed care organizations were affecting the field of dentistry.
July 1, 2015, Carli Brosseau ». Petition granted in part for the name, age, date of death, and cause of death of homicide victims maintained by the State Medical Examiner. This information was not exempt under ORS 192.345(36) because the public interest required disclosure: reliable data on homicide victims would contribute to policy discussions on public health, public safety, and criminal justice issues related to homicide, and this information is typically publicly disclosed by law enforcement. The petition was denied in part for all the information included in these medical examiner reports. Much of this information was sensitive and/or medical in nature, and disclosure would deter future victims’ families from cooperating with medical examiner investigations.
July 14, 2015, Wendy Baker ». Petition granted for individual shareholder records that had been obtained by the Department of Consumer & Business Services in the course of reviewing the proposed acquisition of the corporation. This information was not exempt under ORS 192.355(2) because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy: the public interest in learning about a transaction related to the treatment of Medicare and Medicaid patients was significant, and the department obtained the records in the course of its statutory duty to review the transaction. The general desire of the shareholders to remain anonymous was not sufficient to show an unreasonable invasion of privacy, and the alleged harms that disclosure would cause were unsubstantiated.
April 11, 2016, William T. Harbaugh ». Petition denied for records of PURMIT, a risk management and insurance trust among public universities, because it was not a state agency and therefore any denial was not subject to review by the Attorney General. None of the individual members of PURMIT were state agencies, it was not created by state statute, and it was not administered or directed by a state agency.
July 8, 2016, Rob Davis ». Petition for fee waiver granted in part for the $120 cost to retrieve files from a private storage facility. The public body’s denial was unreasonable under the totality of the circumstances because it could have contracted with a state-run file center that did not charge to retrieve files.
September 12, 2016, Gordon Friedman ». Petition granted for PERS to consider a request for fee waiver. A statute prohibiting PERS from diverting its fund for “any use that is not for the exclusive benefit of members and their beneficiaries,” did not prohibit PERS from waiving or reducing a fee when required by Public Records Law. The statutory prohibition did not require noncompliance with laws that applied to PERS on the same terms as other public bodies. In addition, PERS was permitted to use part of its fund to pay for administrative expenses, which included complying with such generally applicable laws as Public Records Law.
March 21, 2017, Les Zaitz ». Petition granted in part for the mental health records of an Oregon State Hospital patient that were in the custody of the Psychiatric Security Review Board for use in a public hearing on whether the patient should remain under the board’s jurisdiction.
The records were not exempt as transferred records under ORS 192.355(10) because the reasons for the privacy of medical records in the hospital’s custody did not apply to the board’s duties, which were concerned with ensuring public safety.
And the records were not exempt under ORS 192.355(2) because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy and there was clear and convincing evidence that the public interest required disclosure: The patient had admitted at the board’s hearing to faking mental illness for 20 years, and shortly after being released from the board’s jurisdiction was arrested and indicted on murder charges. In addition, the records had been partially described through testimony at the public hearing, and had been used by the patient’s attorney as evidence that the patient was not actually mentally ill.
May 16, 2018, Shasta Kearns Moore ». Petition granted for information from a Teacher Standards and Practices Commission investigation into a teacher. The executive director’s recommendation on discipline was not exempt as an internal advisory communication under ORS 192.355(1): Portions of the recommendation were purely factual in nature and therefore had to be disclosed. For the portions that contained frank opinions, the commission did not show that disclosure would chill candid discussions. In particular, the recommendation was “largely clinical and detached” and did not “contain any controversial opinions or conclusions.”
Personal health information about the teacher was not exempt under HIPAA or ORS 192.558 because the commission was not a covered entity for purposes of those laws. And that information was not exempt under ORS 192.355(2) because disclosure would not constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy: the information did not reveal any diagnoses, intimate or embarrassing medical details, medications, or treatment plans, and the teacher voluntarily offered this information to the commission in order to help resolve the complaint in his favor. In addition, clear and convincing evidence demonstrated that the public interest required disclosure: the complaint involved serious allegations implicating student safety, and the health information may have influenced the commission’s decision on discipline.