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A Clearly Unwarranted Invasion of Personal Privacy

May 5, 2017 Comments off

Utah State Archives notes that the American Library Association has created Choose Privacy Week, an “annual, week-long event that promotes the importance of individual privacy rights and celebrates libraries and librarians’’ unique role in protecting privacy in the library and in society as a whole.” Much has been said about the value of government transparency, however, personal privacy is also important. The Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA) provides for both.

GRAMA provides that “a record is public unless otherwise expressly provided by statute” (Utah Code Subsection 63G-2-201(2)).  Then it includes lists of private records (Utah Code Section 63G-2-302). Other laws and rules identify and protect private information as well. Because all privacy issues cannot specifically be contemplated, GRAMA includes the provision that records are private if releasing them would be “a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy” (Utah Code Subsection 63G-2-302(2)(d)). This is an interpretive provision allowing governmental entities to withhold access to information not specifically identified, but which they deem should be restricted to protect an individual’s privacy.

Privacy means different things to different people and because this law is interpretive, it can have broad application. For example, the law has been applied to an individual’s utility usage (such as water or electricity) and to juvenile names and images. State Records Committee decisions upholding a governmental entity’s privacy classification based on this provision provide a flavor for some of the ways it can be applied.

  • In September 2015, the Salt Lake Tribune requested from Utah State University all records involving student disciplinary actions in cases involving violent or sexual crimes in which a student was sanctioned. Specifically, the Tribune requested the student’s name, the nature of the violation, the date it was committed, and the sanction issued. In response, Utah State University provided the requested information but withheld student names. On appeal, the State Records Committee determined that releasing the names of individuals who were disciplined for violation of university codes of conduct would be a clearly unwarranted invasion of their privacy (State Records Committee Case No. 16-05).
  • In the April 2017 case, Andrew Becker v. Washington County Sheriff’s Office, the Records Committee determined that the release of an unredacted video image from a police officer’s body camera showing the face of a passenger in a DUI stop would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy. After hearing testimony and viewing the records in camera, Committee determined that the Sheriff’s Office had appropriately redacted the video and could recoup the editing costs. (State Records Committee Case No. 17-15).
  • In July 2013, Mr. Leishman, an inmate, requested information about the security clearances of another inmate that related to that inmate’s religious practices as observed by staff in the Wasatch Family History Center offices. UDC provided no records because provision, by implication, would identify the individual. The State Records Committee determined that the information contained in the requested records involved the religious practices of a prison inmate, and their release would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of his personal privacy (State Records Committee Case No. 13-05) .
  • In May 2012, Kurt Danysh requested crime scene photographs and other records relating to the murder of Susan Gall. The State Records Committee was persuaded that all photographs depicting the victim, the inside of the victim’s home, as well as photographs depicting the perpetrator unclothed should be classified as private because release would be a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy (State Records Committee Case No. 12-09).

See additional State Archives post about personal privacy.

How to find State Records Committee Decisions and Orders.

December 7, 2016 Comments off

Have you ever wondered how to find a State Records Committee (SRC) decision or order?  You can access the decisions and orders from the State Records Committee webpage.

Read more…

SRC September Round-up

October 5, 2016 Comments off

By Nova Dubovik on October 5, 2016.

The State Records Committee heard an unprecedented seven appeals on September 8, 2016.  You can locate the Decisions and Orders on the State Records Committee website and the meeting minutes and public handouts on the Utah Public Notice Website.

Clára v. Utah Transit Authority, Case No. 16-33,

Description: The Petitioner requested email correspondences between specified UTA employees. Granted in part, denied in part.

Sullivan v. Utah Department of Corrections, Case No. 16-34,

Description: The Petitioner appealed Corrections’ claim of extraordinary circumstances related to records requested. Denied.

Seamons v. Ticaboo Utility Improvement District, Case No. 16-35,

Description: The Petitioner  appealed district’s claim that it does not have records related to billing on lots that the requester owns in Ticaboo, Utah. Denied.

Salt Lake Tribune v. Provo City and Orem City Police Departments, Case No. 16-36,

Description: The Petitioner requested copies of the Spillman Case Access Logs showing BYU’s access to Provo City and Orem City Police Departments records.  Granted in part, denied in part.

Redd v. Utah Attorney General’s Office, Case No. 16-37,

Description: The Petitioner appealed the claim of extraordinary circumstances related to records requested. Denied.

Bryner v.Clearfield City, Case No. 16-38, Description:  Continuance.

If you have any questions on these cases or others, please submit them to grama@utah.gov

Getting closer! Only 3 more days!

October 4, 2016 Comments off

Getting closer! Only 3 days until Everybody Wins! Records Management Teamwork. This is a conference that your team does not want to miss! Come together, learn together, and [possibly] win together!

For the next 2 days we will highlight our all-star conference team players! Share the excitement with your team—the more the merrier! Registration is still open for in-person and online attendance, the event is free to attend. We look forward to seeing all of you on October 6th!

Panel Discussion: Managing Electronic Records

DFlemingPhoto1.jpgDavid Fleming is the Corporate Records Program Manager for Zions Bancorporation where he works closely with executive and business unit management, Legal, and IT to develop information management and legal discovery strategy and processes for the corporation. Outside of work David serves as ARMA Pacific Region Coordinator and is the current Chair Pro Tem of the Utah State Records Committee. David is a Certified Records Manager (CRM), a Certified Information Governance Professional (IGP) and a Certified Information Professional (CIP).

esjames23editJames Duckett has been the Technology Division Manager for the City of St. George for nine years, where he has combine two of his lifelong passions: working (playing) with technology and building the best IT team possible.

 

 

 

rebekkahshawRebekkah Shaw joined the Archives team in May 2008 after earning her degree at Utah State University. She has been the project leader in updating the general retention schedules since February 2013.

 

 

 

Registration

Attend in-person or participate online, the event is free! The conference will be held at the Miller Free Enterprise Center, 9750 S. 300 W. in Sandy, UT in an auditorium with stadium seating. Online participants will join using Adobe Connect, instructions will be sent out closer to the event.

To register visit our website, and select “Training and Events” under the “Quick Links Section”. Registration instructions are also available on the Open Records Portal’s “Help Center”.

EverbodyWins_RecordsManagementTeamwork_StateArchivesConference

Draft or Record?

June 28, 2016 1 comment

Do you get GRAMA requests for drafts? Do you wonder if your drafts are records or not? What about the classification of drafts? Look no further!

Our wonderful Records Ombudsman, Rosemary Cundiff, has added an article to the Government Records Ombudsman website to help you analyze and classify the drafts created by your office.

This guideline can help you understand when a draft is protected vs. public as well as decisions from the State Records Committee when drafts were the subject of the hearing.

Rosemary is a great resource for government records officers who are responding to records requests. She can be reached at (801) 531-3858 or rcundiff@utah.gov.

PDF: classifying-drafts

 

SRC Retention Schedule Report

January 14, 2016 Comments off

Two proposed general retention schedules were heard by the State Records Committee today and approved. Each of these general schedules were previously posted on this blog for your input.

To hear the discussion regarding these schedules, please go to the State Records Committee’s page on the Public Notice Website. All are welcome to attend the State Records Committee and provide input on retention schedules being discussed. Meetings are held on the second Thursday of each month at the Utah State Archives.

SRC Retention Schedule Report

December 10, 2015 Comments off

Five proposed general retention schedules were heard by the State Records Committee today and approved. Each of these general schedules were previously posted on this blog for your input.

The Committee advised a standard that any unspecified retention using a general retention schedules with flexible retention default to the longest retention stated.

To hear the discussion regarding these schedules, please go to the State Records Committee’s page on the Public Notice Website. All are welcome to attend the State Records Committee and provide input on retention schedules being discussed. Meetings are held on the second Thursday of each month at the Utah State Archives.