Bill Would Impose New Public Records Fee

February 25, 2014

PHOENIX (AP) — The sponsor of an Arizona bill that would impose new fees for access to public records wants to let people know just why that is necessary.

Republican Rep. David Stevens of Sierra Vista plans to try to do that in person Tuesday afternoon at the Arizona House of Representatives. House Bill 2419 would allow public records custodians to charge $20 an hour for labor associated with retrieving public records.

State law currently allows custodians to charge only for the cost of printing public records. The new fee would apply after the first four hours of labor.

Media organizations oppose the fee as a restriction on information the public already owns, but the League of Arizona Cities and Towns said it is needed to handle repeated requests from people who overwhelm public employees.