from: Sunshine Request <[email protected]>
to: John Morris <[email protected]>
cc: Lance Metzler <[email protected]>
date: Jun 18, 2020, 4:37 PM
subject: Re: Records Request: Rockingham County Register of Deeds emails 2016/2019
Good afternoon John,
Thank you for the update!
Can you please let us know when the new records policy about fees went into effect, and please provide us with a link / copy of this policy so we can note the info on our site for users wishing to submit a request to Rockingham County in the future?
Is it possible that a policy for charging fees was not in effect when we originally submitted the request (Rockingham County Register of Deeds emails 2016/2019) on 03/15/19 and the other request (Emails from Rockingham County Commissioner) on 03/10/19, and at any time when we’ve been following up over the past year?
The last time we heard from you was 02/12/20. There was no mention of a new records policy at that time, and until today we haven’t been made aware there could be potential fees associated with the requests. Had we known whenever the requests were made that there could be potential fees, we would have let you know early on we cannot commit to covering any fees / associated costs related to any requests on our site. If there is ever a possibility that any costs may need to be incurred in order to process requests on our site, our policy is to ask that you discontinue the request and we note this for the requestor, leaving it up to them to pursue the request directly with the government entity.
In this case, if you’re now saying that we could be charged a fee for the requests after the fact, we did not agree to this and we are not willing to cover any costs – you should please cease processing the request at this time if costs will need to be incurred.
We’d also like to reiterate that the requests asked for emails (these are already in a digital format). We have asked several times that the files please be sent in a digital format like Google Drive, Dropbox, CD (if absolutely necessary), etc. It is unclear why those files would need to be printed, and why there would be a “fee for each page of information provided.” We do not need physical copies of associated files for this request, nor is it required by law that we must come to your office in person to pick up records, if you are suggesting that’s how they will be provided.
Most recently, on 11/25/19 we restated to your office: “Since July 17 we have been emailing / calling Rockingham County related to our clarification in July that asked that we receive the files in a digital format like Google Drive, Dropbox, etc. That is what is preferred / ideal if that’s possible. If the files can be uploaded to a public Dropbox or Google Drive when they are ready, that would be great. If this isn’t possible, and mailing CDs of the files is what is required, please let us know and we’ll be happy to provide a mailing address at that time.”
Thank you for your assistance!