[HISTORY: Adopted by the Village Board of the Village of Shorewood 4-7-1986 by Ord. No. 1477 as Ch. 5, Art. 7 of the 1986 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- The Shorewood Village Board as the authority responsible for Village governmental records and the Shorewood Municipal Judge as the authority responsible for Shorewood Municipal Court records.
- That officer, department head or employee of the Village designated under § 138-3 hereof or otherwise responsible by law to file, deposit, keep and preserve any Village records in his or her office or who is lawfully in possession or entitled to possession of such public records and who is required by this chapter to respond to requests for access to such records.
- Any material on which written, drawn, printed, spoken, visual
or electromagnetic information is recorded or preserved, regardless
of physical form or characteristics, which has been created or is
being kept by an authority. "Record" includes, but is not limited
to, handwritten, typed or printed pages, maps, charts, photographs,
films, recordings, tapes (including computer tapes), computer printouts
and optical disks. "Record" does not include drafts, notes, preliminary
computations and like materials prepared for the originator's personal
use or prepared by the originator in the name of a person for whom
the originator is working; materials which are purely the personal
property of the custodian and have no relation to his or her office;
materials to which access is limited by copyright, patent or bequest;
and published materials in the possession of an authority other than
a public library which are available for sale, or which are available
for inspection at a public library.[Amended 2-25-2008 by Ord. No. 1935]
- Any person who requests inspection or copies of a record.
Except as provided under § 138-7 hereof, each officer and employee of the Village 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 records are in the 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.
Upon the 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 said receipt with the Village Clerk. If a vacancy occurs before a successor is selected or qualifies, such records shall be delivered to and receipted for by the Clerk on behalf of the successor to be delivered to such successor upon the latter's receipt.
Each elected official is the legal custodian of his or her records and the records of his or her office, but the official may designate an employee of the Village to act as the legal custodian of said records.
Unless otherwise prohibited by law, the Village Clerk or the Clerk's designee shall act as legal custodian for the Village Board and for any committees, commissions, boards, or other authorities created by ordinance or resolution of the Village Board.
In all other cases, the Village Manager, Village Attorney and each Village department head of the Village government shall be the legal custodian for all public records emanating from, deposited with, and relating to the work of said office or department.
Each legal custodian shall name a person to act as legal custodian in his or her absence or the absence of his or her designee.
The legal custodian shall have full legal power to render decisions and to carry out the duties of an authority under Subchapter II of Ch. 19, Wis. Stats., and under this chapter. The designation of a legal custodian does not affect the powers and duties of an authority under this chapter.
Except as provided in § 138-6 hereof, 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.
Records will be available for inspection and copying during all regular office hours.
A requester shall be permitted to use facilities comparable to those available to Village employees to inspect, copy or abstract a record.
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.
A requester shall be charged a fee to defray the cost of locating and copying records as follows:
The cost of photocopying shall be the actual, necessary and direct costs of reproduction and shall be posted in accordance with the requirements of Subsection F hereof.
If the form of a written record does not permit copying, the actual and necessary cost of photographing and photographic processing shall be charged.
The actual full cost of providing a copy of other records, not in printed form on paper, such as films, computer printouts and audio or video tapes, shall be charged.
If mailing or shipping is necessary, the actual cost thereof shall also be charged.
There shall be no charge for locating a record unless the actual cost therefor exceeds $50, in which case the actual cost shall be determined by the legal custodian and billed to the requester.
The legal custodian shall estimate the cost of all applicable fees and may require a prepayment of fees if such estimate exceeds $5.
Elected and appointed officials of the Village shall not be required to pay for a copy of public records they may reasonably require for the proper performance of their official duties.
The legal custodian may provide copies of a record without charge or at a reduced charge where he or she determines that waiver or reduction of the fee is in the public interest.
Pursuant to § 19.34, Wis. Stats., and the guidelines therein listed, the authority 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 request for records or obtain copies of records and the cost thereof. Each authority shall also prominently display at its offices, for the guidance of the public, a copy of this chapter.
A request to inspect or copy a record shall be made to the legal custodian of the records affected by the request. A request shall be deemed sufficient if it reasonably describes the requested record or the information requested. A request for a record without a reasonable limitation as to the subject matter or length of time represented by the record does not constitute a sufficient request. A request may be made orally, but a request must be in writing before an action to enforce the request is commenced under § 19.37, Wis. Stats. Except as provided hereinafter, no request may be refused because the person making the request is unwilling to be identified or to state the purpose of the request. No request may be refused because the request is received by mail, unless prepayment of a fee is required under § 138-4E(6) hereof. A requester may be required to show acceptable identification whenever the requested record is kept at a private residence or whenever security reasons or federal law or regulations so require.
Each custodian, upon request for any records, shall, as soon as practicable and without delay, either fill the request or notify the requester of the authority's determination to deny the request in whole or in part and the reasons therefor. If the legal custodian, after conferring with the Village Attorney, determines that a written request is so general as to be unduly time-consuming, the party making the request may first be required to itemize his or her request in a manner which would permit reasonable compliance.
A request for a record may be denied as provided in § 138-6 hereof. If a request is made orally, the request may be denied orally unless a demand for a written statement of the reasons for denying the request is made by the requester within five business days of the oral denial. If a written request is denied in whole or in part, the requester shall receive a written statement of the reasons for denying the request. Every written denial of a request shall inform the requester that if the request for the record was made in writing, then the determination is subject to review upon petition for a writ of mandamus under § 19.37(1), Wis. Stats., or upon application to the Attorney General or the District Attorney.
As provided by § 19.36, Wis. Stats., the following records are exempt from inspection under this chapter:
Records specifically exempted from disclosure by state or federal law or authorized to be exempted from disclosure by state law.
Any record relating to investigative information obtained for law enforcement purposes if federal law or regulations require exemption from disclosure or if exemption from disclosure is a condition to receipt of aids by the state.
Computer programs, although the material used as input for a computer program or the material produced as a product of the computer program is subject to inspection.
A record or any portion of a record containing information qualifying as a common law trade secret.
As provided by § 43.30, Wis. Stats., public library circulation records are exempt from inspection under this chapter.
In responding to a request for inspection or copying of a record which is not specifically exempt from disclosure, the legal custodian, after conferring with the Village 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:
Records obtained under official pledges of confidentiality which were necessary and given in order to obtain the information contained in them.
Records of current deliberations after a quasi-judicial hearing.
Records of current deliberations concerning employment, dismissal, promotion, demotion, compensation, performance or discipline of any Village officer or employee or the investigation of charges against a Village officer or employee, unless such officer or employee consents to such disclosure.
Records concerning current strategy for crime detection or prevention.
Records of current deliberations or negotiations on the purchase of Village property, investing of Village funds, or other Village business whenever competitive or bargaining reasons require nondisclosure.
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.
Communications between legal counsel for the Village and any officer, agent, or employee of the Village, when advice is being rendered concerning strategy with respect to current litigation in which the Village 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.
If a record contains information that may be made public and information that may not be made public, the custodian of the records 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 Village Attorney prior to releasing any such records and shall follow the guidance of the Village Attorney when separating out the exempt material. If, in the judgment of the custodian and the Village 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.
[Amended 6-7-1999 by Ord. No. 1785; 12-14-1999 by Ord. No. 1791;1-17-2000 by Ord. No. 1793; 6-6-2002 by Ord. No. 1834; 9-9-2002 by Ord. No. 1839; 1-6-2003 by Ord. No. 1846; 2-25-2008 by Ord. No. 1935; 6-21-2010 by Ord. No. 1969; 9-18-2017 by Ord. No. 2084]
Scope of authority. As provided by § 19.21(4), Wis. Stats., the following schedules provide directions for the destruction of obsolete public records, except that no records may be destroyed:
After a request for inspection or copying a record has been received under § 138-4 and until the request is granted or until at least 90 days after the request is denied; or
After written notice has been received that an action relating to a record has been commenced under § 19.37, Wis. Stats., and until all litigation and appeals regarding that action have concluded.
Clerk-Treasurer's office records. The Village Clerk and Finance Director, or their designee, may destroy the following public records after the expiration of the designated retention periods as contained within the following retention schedule. Except for Village Board minutes, ordinances and resolutions which are to be retained permanently, the State Historical Society of Wisconsin has waived the required statutory notification prior to destruction of records per § 19.21(5)(d), Wis. Stats., for the records listed below.
Accounting records. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Assessment records. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Board of Review records. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Budget and audit records. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Election records. All materials and supplies associated with an election may be destroyed according to the following schedule unless there is a re-count, notice of election contest, or any contest or litigation pending with respect to the election:
Journal, registers and ledger. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Licenses and permits. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Municipal borrowing records. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Payroll records. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Real property records. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Tax collection records. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Treasurer's records. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Utility records. The following public records for water, sewer and parking may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Village Board, committees and commissions. The following public records may be destroyed after the expiration of the designated retention period:
Health Department records. The Director of Public Health Services or the Director's designee may destroy the following records after expiration of the designated retention periods as contained within the following retention schedule. The State Historical Society of Wisconsin has waived the statutory period required prior to the destruction of records pursuant to § 19.21(5)(d), Wis. Stats., for the records identified in the retention schedule listed below.
Any tape recording of a governmental meeting of the Village 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.
Police Department records. The Chief of Police, or the Chief's designee, may destroy the following public records after the expiration of the designated retention periods as contained within the following retention schedule. The State Historical Society of Wisconsin has waived the required statutory sixty-day notice under § 19.21(5)(d), Wis. Stats., for all the records listed below.
Municipal Court records. The Municipal Judge or the Clerk of the Municipal Court as the Judges' designee may destroy the following public records after the expiration of the designated retention periods as contained within the following retention schedule. In the event there are two possible retention times after an event, then the later of the time periods shall be applicable. The State Historical Society of Wisconsin has waived the required statutory sixty-day notice under § 19.21(5)(d), Wis. Stats., for all the records listed below.
Any Village officer or any department head of the Village government may, subject to the approval of the Village Manager, keep and preserve public records in his or her possession by means of microfilm or other photographic reproduction methods. Such records shall meet the standards for photographic reproduction set forth under state law and shall be considered original records for all purposes. Such records shall be preserved along with other files of the department or of the Village government and shall be open to public inspection and copying according to the provisions of state law and §§ 138-4 through 138-6 of this chapter.