Public Disclosure Records Requests

Washington State law RCW 42.56 requires all agencies to respond to requests for public records in a timely manner and in an acceptable way. Records that are created by the department during the course of business are considered public records. The term "public records (RCW 42.56.010(2))" applies to any record, no matter the media, including electronic.

Questions about Public Disclosure

What is the difference between public disclosure and public information?
How do I make a public disclosure request?
How long will it take to answer my request?
What records are exempt from Public Disclosure?
What are the copying costs?

What is the difference between public disclosure and public information?

Public Disclosure is the process of how the public may obtain public records from state agencies.

Public Information is information and/or records that can be obtained from other sources outside WSDOT (i.e., the Internet, State Library, ferry schedules, maps, etc.)

How do I make a public disclosure request?

  1. Use the Public Disclosure Request Center 
  2. or you can mail or fax your request to:

Records & Information Management 
PO Box 47410
Olympia, WA  98504-7410
Phone: 360-705-7424
Fax: 360-705-6808

How long will it take to answer my request?

Within five business days after receiving the request, we will:

  1. Provide the record(s); or
  2. Acknowledge your request and give you a reasonable estimate of how long it will take to respond; or
  3. Deny the request in writing, stating the reasons for the denial (this could also include a denial of part of your request and granting the remainder). By statute, RCW 42.56.520, the department must cite the specific exemption that applies.

What records are exempt from Public Disclosure?

  • Personal information regarding agency personnel, such as: social security numbers, home phone numbers, home addresses, resumes and employment applications.
  • Investigative records relating to a current investigation.
  • Test scores, 
  • Data, if disclosed, that could result in private gain and/or public loss.
  • Correspondence between department/agency staff and the Attorney General's Office
  • Information that if released, would constitute an invasion of privacy as defined in RCW 42.56.210 & 42.56.230 
  • For a complete list of exemptions see RCW 42.56.210-480

What are the copying costs?

Copies are charged at .15 cents per page (standard single sided
8 ½" x 11" black & white sheet).
A price list can be supplied, upon request, for copies other than the standard size