City of Burlington, WI
Racine County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Common Council of the City of Burlington 12-19-2000 by Ord. No. 1646(50). Amendments noted where applicable.]

§ 67-1 Legal custodians.

A. 
Unless provided below, the City Administrator is designated as legal custodian of all records of the City departments, boards, committees and commissions. The following offices or departments shall have as the legal custodian of records the individual so named:
Office or Department
Legal Custodian
General City records
City Administrator
(including Council)
Fire Department
Fire Chief
Police Department
Chief of Police
Financial records
City Treasurer
Municipal Library
Librarian
City Attorney's office
City Attorney
Water/Wastewater Utilities
Utility Manager
B. 
Each legal custodian shall name a person to act as legal custodian in his or her absence or in the absence of his or her designee, and each legal custodian shall send notice of the designated deputy to the City Administrator.

§ 67-2 Policies regarding requests for records.

All City offices or departments, boards, committees and commissions that adopt a policy shall do so in writing and shall:
A. 
Designate a custodian and an alternate to act as a custodian in the absence of the primary custodian.
B. 
Designate within the written policy the office hours during which a records request may be made.
C. 
Provide that all such requests shall be made in writing or otherwise reduced to writing.
D. 
Provide for the payment of fees not inconsistent with this policy.
E. 
Provide a draft for approval by the City Attorney. No policy or any changes thereto shall be implemented without the approval of the City Attorney.

§ 67-3 Policies to be filed with Clerk.

All City offices or departments that have adopted a policy or that will adopt a policy pursuant to § 67-2 shall provide a copy of such policy to the City Clerk, who shall maintain a policy file and use it to redirect records requests to the appropriate custodian.

§ 67-4 Review of certain requests by Attorney.

All records requests determined by the custodian to be other than routine shall be directed to the office of the City Attorney for review and recommendation.

§ 67-5 Requests made to Administrator.

Records requests made to the office of the City Administrator shall:
A. 
Be in writing and be specific as to the information requested.
B. 
Be made during regular office hours, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
C. 
Be filled within a reasonable time.

§ 67-6 Fees. [1]

A. 
The Clerk's office shall charge the person requesting information the following fees:
(1) 
A fee set by the Common Council to reproduce and fill the request by photocopying or producing a copy of an audio tape, video tape, compact disc or other recording.
[Amended 3-15-2005 by Ord. No. 1775(27)]
(2) 
The actual and necessary costs of reproducing engineering drawings, plans and specifications.
(3) 
If it is necessary to photograph the information, the actual necessary and direct cost of photographing.
(4) 
The actual, necessary and direct search fees if they exceed an amount set by the Common Council. Search fees shall be charged on an hourly basis, at a rate set by the Common Council. In the event it is necessary to use nonclerical personnel in the search, their time will be charged at their existing hourly rate plus benefits.
(5) 
The actual, necessary and direct cost of mailing.
B. 
When the estimated and/or actual charges exceed an amount set by the Common Council, the Clerk shall require prepayment.
C. 
The legal custodian may provide copies of the record without charge or at a reduced charge if he or she determines that waiver or reduction of the fee is in the public interest.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Fee Schedule on file at the City Clerk's office.

§ 67-7 Public access to records.

A. 
Except as provided, any person has a right to inspect a record and to make or receive a copy of any record as provided in § 19.35(1), Wis. Stats.
B. 
Records will be available for inspection and copying during all regular office hours.
C. 
If regular office hours are not maintained at the location records are kept, the custodian will use his/her best efforts to have records available for inspection and copying upon at least 72 business hours' advance notice of intent to inspect or copy.
D. 
The legal custodian may require supervision during inspection or may impose other reasonable restrictions on the manner of access to an original record if the record is irreplaceable or easily damaged.
E. 
Pursuant to § 19.34, Wis. Stats., and the guidelines therein listed, each department, board, committee or commission shall adopt, prominently display and make available for inspection and copying at its offices, for the guidance of the public, a notice containing a description of its organization and the established times and places at which, the legal custodian from whom, and the methods whereby the public may obtain information and access to records in its custody, make requests for records, or obtain copies of records and the cost thereof. This subsection does not apply to members of the Common Council.

§ 67-8 Limitations on right to access.

A. 
As provided in § 19.36, Wis. Stats., the following records are exempt from inspection under this chapter:
(1) 
Records specifically exempted from disclosure by state or federal law or authorized to be exempted from disclosure by state law.
(2) 
Any record relating to investigative information obtained for law enforcement purposes wherever federal law or regulations require exemption from disclosure or if exemption from disclosure is a condition to receipt of aids by the state.
(3) 
Computer programs and files, although the material used as input for a computer program/file or the material produced as a product of the computer program is subject to inspection.
(4) 
Pursuant to § 905.08, Wis. Stats., a record or any portion of record containing information qualifying as a common law trade secret, as defined in § 134.90(1)(c), Wis. Stats.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
(5) 
Any other records specifically exempted by § 19.36, Wis. Stats.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: Added at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
B. 
As provided by § 43.30, Wis. Stats., public library circulation records are exempt from inspection under this section.
C. 
In responding to a request for inspection or copying a record which is not specifically exempt from disclosure, the legal custodian, after conferring with the City Attorney, may deny the request, in whole or in part, only if he or she determines that the harm to the public interest resulting from disclosure would outweigh the public interest in full access to the requested record. Examples of matters for which disclosure may be refused include, but are not limited to, the following:
(1) 
Records obtained under official pledges of confidentiality which were necessary and given in order to obtain the information contained in them.
(2) 
Pursuant to § 19.85(1)(a), Wis. Stats., records of current deliberations after a quasi-judicial hearing.
(3) 
Pursuant to § 19.85(1)(b) and (c), Wis. Stats., records of current deliberations concerning employment, dismissal, promotion, demotion, compensation, performance, or discipline of any City officer or employee, or the investigation of charges against the City officer or employee, unless such officer or employee consents to such disclosure.
(4) 
Pursuant to § 19.85(1)(d), Wis. Stats., records concerning current strategy for crime detection or prevention.
(5) 
Pursuant to § 19.85(1)(e), Wis. Stats., records of current deliberations or negotiations on the purchase of City property, investing of City funds, or other City business whenever competitive or bargaining reasons require nondisclosure.
(6) 
Pursuant to § 19.85(1)(f), Wis. Stats., financial, medical, social or personal histories or disciplinary data of specific persons which, if disclosed, would be likely to have a substantial adverse effect upon the reputation of any person referred to in such history or data.
(7) 
Pursuant to § 19.85(1)(g), Wis. Stats., communications between legal counsel for the City and any officer, agent or employee of the City, when advice is being rendered concerning strategy with respect to current litigation in which the City or any of its officers, agents or employees is or is likely to become involved, or communications which are privileged under § 905.03, Wis. Stats.
(8) 
Pursuant to § 19.85(1)(h), Wis. Stats., requests for confidential written advice from an ethics board and records of advice given by such ethics board on such request.
D. 
If a record contains information that may be made public and information that may not be made public, the custodian of record shall provide the information that may be made public and delete the information that may not be made public from the record before release. The custodian shall confer with the City Attorney prior to releasing any such record and shall follow the guidance of the City Attorney when separating out the exempt material. If in the judgment of the custodian and the City Attorney there is no feasible way to separate the exempt material from the nonexempt material without unreasonably jeopardizing nondisclosure of the exempt material, the entire record shall be withheld from disclosure.

§ 67-9 Duty to maintain records.

A. 
Except as provided under § 67-10 below, each officer and employee of the City shall safely keep and preserve all records received from his or her predecessor or other persons and required by law to be filed, deposited or kept in his or her office or which are in lawful possession or control of the officer or employee or his or her deputies, or to the possession or control of which he or she or they may be lawfully entitled as such officers or employees.
B. 
Upon expiration of an officer's term of office or an employee's term of employment, or whenever the office or position of employment becomes vacant, each such officer or employee shall deliver to his or her successor all records then in his or her custody and the successor shall receipt therefor to the officer or employee, who shall file the receipt with the City Administrator. If a vacancy occurs before a successor is selected or qualified, such record shall be delivered to and receipted for by the Administrator, on behalf of the successor, to be delivered to such successor upon the latter's receipt.

§ 67-10 Destruction of records.

A. 
City officers may destroy the following nonutility financial records of which they are the legal custodian and which are considered obsolete after completion of any required audit by the Department of Revenue or an auditor licensed under Ch. 442, Wis. Stats., but not less than seven years after payment or receipt of any sum involved in a particular transaction, unless a shorter period has been fixed by the State Public Records Board pursuant to § 16.61(3)(e), Wis. Stats., and then after such shorter period:[1]
(1) 
Bank statements, deposit books, slips and stubs.
(2) 
Bonds and coupons after maturity.
(3) 
Canceled checks, duplicates and check stubs.
(4) 
License and permit applications, stubs and duplicates.
(5) 
Payrolls and other time and employment records of personnel included under the Wisconsin Retirement Fund.
(6) 
Receipt forms.
(7) 
Special assessment records.
(8) 
Vouchers, requisitions, purchase orders and all other supporting documents pertaining thereto.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
B. 
City officers may destroy the following utility records of which they are the legal custodian and which are considered obsolete after completion of any required audit by the Department of Revenue or an auditor licensed under Ch. 442, Wis. Stats., subject to State Public Service Commission regulations, but not less than seven years after the record was effective, unless a shorter period has been fixed by the State Public Records Board pursuant to § 16.61(3)(e), Wis. Stats., and then after such shorter period, except that water stubs, receipts of current billings and customer ledgers may be destroyed not less than two years after payment or receipt of the sum involved or the effective date of the record:[2]
(1) 
Contracts and papers relating thereto.
(2) 
Excavation permits.
(3) 
Inspection records.
[2]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
C. 
City officers may destroy the following records of which they are the legal custodian and which are considered obsolete but not less than seven years after the record was effective, unless another period has been set by statute, and then after such a period, or unless a shorter period has been fixed by the State Public Records Board pursuant to § 16.61(3)(e), Wis. Stats., and then after such a shorter period:
(1) 
Contracts and papers relating thereto.
(2) 
Correspondence and communication.
(3) 
Financial records other than annual financial reports.
(4) 
Justice dockets.
(5) 
Oaths of office.
(6) 
Reports of boards, commissions, committees and officials duplicated in the Common Council proceedings.
(7) 
Election notices and proofs of publication.
(8) 
Canceled voter registration cards.
(9) 
Official bonds.
(10) 
Police records other than investigative records.
(11) 
Resolutions and petitions, provided the text of the same appears in the official City minutes.
D. 
Notwithstanding the above provisions appearing in this section, it is intended hereby that election materials may be destroyed according to lesser time schedules as made and provided in § 7.23, Wis. Stats.
E. 
Unless notice is waived by the State Historical Society, at least 60 days' notice shall be given the State Historical Society prior to the destruction of any records as provided by § 19.21(4)(a), Wis. Stats.
F. 
Any tape recordings of a governmental meeting of the City may be destroyed, erased or reused no sooner than 90 days after the minutes of the meeting have been approved and published, if the purpose of the recording was to make minutes of the meeting.