- What is a public record?
A public record "includes, but is not limited to, a document, book, paper, photograph, file, sound recording or machine readable electronic record, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made, received, filed or recorded in pursuance of law or in connection with the transaction of public business, whether or not confidential or restricted in use" (Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) 192.005).
- What is my responsibility for maintaining public records?
Your responsibility for managing public records in your custody includes identifying public records, retaining records in compliance with an authorized records retention schedule, and destroying those records that have met their retention period or are defined as non-public records in Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) 192.005.
- How can I determine if an item is a public record?
If you have created, received, filed or recorded a record, regardless of its physical form and in pursuance of law or in connection with the transaction of public business, you have a public record.
- I do all my work on a computer and never print or sign anything. Do records retention schedules, Public Records Law and records management policies apply to me?
Yes. All of the specified items apply regardless of how the records are created or where they are stored.
- I regularly forget to follow the records retention schedule. Nothing can happen to me, right?
Wrong! Oregon sets a high value on the management and access of public records. If you destroy, alter, or withhold public records you may be found guilty of "Tampering with a Public Record" (Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) 162.305), punishable by a year in prison and $5,000 fine.
- How long should I keep my files?
The City follows the State Records Retention Schedules, which list the records you create and how long you need to keep them. Remember, retention applies to the content of the record and not its format.